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Solar remains a good investment for householders

The Feed-in Tariff rate which is paid out for rooftop solar is to change from the 8th February 2016. Householders who go solar from tomorrow onwards be eligible for the new rate of 4.39p/kWh.

Although technically the Feed-in Tariff system has been paused for three weeks, householders can continue to invest in solar as normal in the interim and will simply have to wait a few weeks before their payments commence.

Whilst the tariff has been set at a lower rate than the solar industry would have liked, the government greatly improved on its original proposals for the new solar Feed-in Tariff scheme after a campaign by the Solar Trade Association, businesses and an unprecedented response by the public.

The new rates mean a return on investment of around 5% â?? a tax free, inflation linked return, higher than any rates on offer today for savings accounts.

For householders the new rates mean a return on investment of around 5% â?? a tax free, inflation linked return, higher than any rates on offer today for savings accounts, where interest rates are at a record low. A competitively priced solar installation is likely to be paid back â?? the breakeven point on the investment â?? in around 13 years and it is possible for householders to improve payback further through intelligent use of their system.

This means that solar is still a good solid investment for householders and an essential investment for the planet. Costs have come down so fast solar is much more affordable today than five years ago. In addition to the Feed in Tariff payments solar will save householders significant money on energy bills.

Canny householders can take steps to improve the payback of their system by maximising their use of power output by investing in power diverters and even electricity storage.

The new rates will still be attractive to householders with an interest in low carbon technology, the environment and home improvements. Canny householders can take steps to improve the payback of their system by maximising their use of power output from the system (for example by using timer functions and running appliances during the day) and by investing in power diverters and even electricity storage. Recent research by Barclays shows home buyers perceive solar as the most attractive technology when buying a new home, adding an estimated £2000 to the value of a home.

Anyone who needs to replace or repair their roof to include solar as the economics of going solar while you are re-roofing are particularly good. Roof replacement schemes are very attractive particularly as a new generation of roof integrated solar panels can replace and blend with traditional slates and tiles.

Solar is a remarkably reliable technology with 98% of solar installations working as originally specified when the system was originally installed.

Anyone installing solar should proceed as recommended by the Renewable Energy Consumer Code (RECC) and advice is freely available on our website www.ellipseenergy.co.uk

The RECC code requires us to issue a workmanship warranty for each installation valid for a minimum of two years and for this to be insurance-backed, so consumers can continue to have confidence in their installations. To ensure our customers are entitled to Feed-in Tariff payments we are also Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) certified and members of RECC.

The changes to the solar feed-in tariff are significant but solar technology remains exceptionally reliable and attractive and the solar industry has proved itself to be the best energy sector in the world at bringing down costs and developing innovative products. Solar power is the UKâ??s most popular energy technology and we at Ellipse Energy are confident that, while solar may be less financially attractive than previously, we are determined to help deliver a solar revolution that will benefit everybody.

Need advice?

Please contact Ellipse Energy FREE on 0800 108 8824 (Monday-Friday, 8:30am-17:30pm)
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Cuan Forrest
Managing Director
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