Why You Should Not Install Solar Yourself: It’s Costly

Young couple, frustrated homeowners

There’s no doubt that solar power at home will save you significantly on your power bills, and the cost savings of going solar is attracting more people than ever to make the change. However, a small number of homeowners attempt to install the solar panels themselves instead of hiring a licensed, experienced professional firm like LGCY Power.

Why would someone choose to DIY their solar panel installation instead of hiring the right pro?

The Perception of Cost Savings

The perception of cost savings is the main reason to undertake DIY solar panel installation. According to a Pew Research Center survey about solar power at home, 96% of people who were interested in solar thought it would save them money on their electric bills, which was by far the most prevalent reason.

But will DIY home solar panel installation really add up to significant savings at the end of the day? Or does the potential risk and opportunity costs actually make it a more expensive option in many cases?

First off, let’s address how much money you THINK you may save if you opt for the DIY solar option. According to market data by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the costs for design, installation, and labor only contribute about 10% of the final bill.

For penny-pinching, coupon-clipping, frugal homeowners who are considering DIY solar panel installation; at best, you’ll potentially save only about 10% of the total cost!

Sure, you can head over to Home Depot, Costco, or go online and easily shop for a home solar kit. At that point, it may seem like you’re saving a couple of bucks on solar. However, the results will probably be as bad as if you tried to order a DIY swimming pool in a box and expected it to last twenty or thirty years.

An established and reputable firm like LGCY Power offers state-of-the-art equipment and solar panels that typically aren’t available to the general public.

Even if it was possible for you to buy these parts and materials on your own (it isn’t), you’d be shocked at how much you’d have to pay as an individual, not a firm doing business in volume.

DIY Home Solar Panel Kits

DIY home solar panel installation kits that are available to the average person through retail stores not only have a larger profit margin, but offer panels, materials, and equipment that are of far lesser quality. 

If you do manage to properly install your new (cheap) DIY solar panels and connect the system successfully (which the vast majority of homeowners cannot and do not), they certainly will yield you less power and therefore little savings. 

Remember that you’re buying solar panels not just to install them but to use them. So, installing bad panels that don’t work very well just to save a little on up-front costs is like stepping over a dollar to save a penny. But when installation is handled by the pros, you can feel confident that it will save you an exponential amount of money in the long run.

DIY Home Installers Miss Out on Tax Incentives and Credits

Saving the biggest cost benefit for last, DIYers frequently miss out on the tax incentives and credits that are available for solar. Solar firms like LGCY Power make it their business to know every credit, incentive, rebate, and new tax code that deals with solar for homeowners.

In fact, the federal solar tax credit is 26% until 2023, which basically gives you a 26% discount on your solar system’s value.

Update: In August 2022, the solar tax credit was increased to 30% and extended through 2032.

But there’s no way the average consumer who undertakes DIY solar panel installation has knowledge of these tax savings, nor do they know how to fill out the paperwork to apply and access them.

Even if you did have a whole lot of free time and energy to go through that learning curve, in some states, these tax incentives aren’t available to the homeowner unless they’ve used a licensed contractor to install their solar panels and connect their system.

If you’re serious about saving with solar at home and want to make sure you do it the right way, contact LGCY Power today!

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