Solar Incentives in Illinois

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Illinois currently generates more electricity from nuclear power than any other state. The introduction of more solar incentives is beginning to provide replacement energy options within the price range of residents.

Illinois isn’t the sunniest state, which makes solar more expensive to install. You need more solar panels to capture the same energy as a high sunshine state like Texas or Florida.

Current incentives can cut your taxes and allow you to sell back excess electricity. These make solar energy more attractive when added to the fact that panel prices have dropped by 36 percent in the past five years.

If you’re looking for a better energy choice, the current set of incentives is very attractive. Let’s take a look at the options available to you.

Table of Contents

Federal Credit

Until the end of 2022, you can still take advantage of the Solar Investment Tax Credit. The credit provides a dollar-for-dollar cut in your income taxes. Congress has extended the deadline several times, but the residential credit is scheduled to end after 2023.

Right now, the tax credit is 26 percent for systems installed in homes by the end of 2022. The credit steps down to 22 percent in 2023 before being phased out.

State and Local Incentives

The first incentive Illinois offered to encourage solar installations came in 1998. That bill provided a property tax easement to avoid increasing home values.

Any solar added to your property is to be valued the same as a conventional energy system. Note that you have to file a particular form with your tax assessor’s office to receive the easement.

In 2007, net metering was introduced, which requires your utility to buy back any excess electricity you generate from your solar install. This is typically given as a credit on your electric bill and helps balance your production and consumption. Your installer can help you calculate a savings estimate to help you understand what your average energy costs might end up being.

Few local jurisdictions have incentive programs, leaving that to the state and the utilities. Some have made attempts to make getting solar simpler, like the easy permit process in Chicago.


One of the state’s largest utility companies, ComEd, offers rebates for commercial customers to help defray some of the costs of installing solar. They do not offer a similar rebate for residential customers, although they participate in the net metering program. They can also work with you to help you take advantage of the other incentives offered at the state and federal levels for homeowners.

Find Solar Incentives in Illinois

Going solar might seem like an expensive proposition, but you can reduce the cost by taking advantage of all the discounts and rebates available. These solar incentives come from various sources for Illinois residents, and you might start with the ones provided through your utility company. Your local solar installed can help you identify all the options available to you.

If you found this article helpful, check out our other blog posts on saving money and home improvement.