Solar Rebates in NSW
With over 20% of households in New South Wales benefiting from solar energy, it makes sense to want to get in on the solar power action. If you live in New South Wales, you can not only benefit from lowering your energy bills, but also from reducing your carbon footprint by installing solar PV onto your rooftop. If you’re interested in solar energy for your home, the government NSW offers some solar rebates to help households make the most of their solar PV systems. Read more below for information about solar rebates in NSW, and how you can receive them.
Solar energy in New South Wales
Thanks to improved technology and lowered costs, solar PV systems in New South Wales are cheaper than ever. As of 2020, over 20% of households in New South Wales are currently benefiting from solar energy, making a combined total of 2.54GW of capacity. Currently, solar panels in NSW cost less than the national average, as shown below.
|Solar PV size||3kWh||4kWh||5kWh||6kWh||7kWh||10kWh|
|Average cost in NSW||$3,620||$4,310||$4,650||$5,220||$6,370||$8,930|
|National average cost||$4,140||$4,830||$5,270||$5,900||$7,190||$10,150|
Source: Solar Choice. Valid August 2020
According to Solar Quotes, a new 5kW solar PV system installed on a north-facing roof in Sydney could produce, on average, 19kWh of electricity per day or over 7,000kWh per year. This can make a big difference on a household’s electricity bill. Couple this with a solar feed-in-tariff and government solar rebates, and your solar PV system could pay itself off within five years (Source: Clean Energy Council 2020 Solar Report).
Home solar battery loan NSW
While not a solar energy rebate, the NSW solar battery loan is available to residents of the Hunter region in NSW, which gives homeowners access to interest-free loans to add a solar battery to their solar PV system. With the home solar battery loan in New South Wales, homeowners can receive an interest-free loan of up to:
- $14,000 towards a new solar PV and battery system which can be repaid in up to 8 years
- $9,000 towards a retrofitted solar battery on an existing solar PV system which can be repaid in up to 10 years
Solar battery loan eligibility
If you want to benefit from the NSW solar battery loan, you’ll need to meet the following requirements:
- Live within one of the approved postcodes in the Hunter region
- Have a combined household income of no more than $180,000 per year
- Own your own home, and have the authority to install the system
- Satisfy the loan criteria
It’s also important to note that if you are already part of the Solar for Low Income Households Scheme, you are not eligible for the solar battery loan as well.
Is the solar battery loan right for me?
Not every household will benefit from solar batteries. Depending on your circumstances, you might be better off with keeping your solar PV system battery-free. You’ll most likely benefit from a solar battery if your household:
- Uses a higher than average amount of electricity (over 6,000kWh per year)
- Uses most of its electricity in the morning and evenings
- Is on a time-of-use tariff, or is planning to change to one
- Already implements other energy saving techniques
How to apply for the solar battery loan in New South Wales
If you meet the eligibility criteria, and believe your household would benefit from the solar battery loan, you can begin the application process. Your first step is to contact several approved solar battery suppliers who will discuss your needs and assess if your home is suitable for a battery and, following a home inspection, provide a quote covering the costs and savings.
After you choose the best quote, you can log into the Accept Your Quote portal managed by Plenti, where you can enter your details and complete the loan application. Once your loan is approved, your chosen solar battery supplier will arrange the installation.
Approved solar battery suppliers in NSW
If you’re interested in applying for the solar battery loan, you’ll need to get in touch with one of the approved solar battery suppliers in NSW. These suppliers are accredited by the Clean Energy Council and will offer expert advice on whether your home is suitable for a home battery.
Approved battery suppliers for the solar battery loan in New South Wales are:
- HCB Solar
- MV Solar
- Natural Solar
- Smart Energy Group
- Sunbank Solar
Solar for Low Income Households in New South Wales
If you live in New South Wales and are receiving the Low Income Household Rebate, you might be eligible to receive a free solar PV system through the NSW Government. The Solar for Low Income Households scheme offers 3,000 low income households the ability to install a free 3kW solar PV system.
Am I eligible for the Solar for Low Income Households scheme?
Up to 3,000 low income households will benefit from the Solar for Low Income Households scheme. In order to be eligible you will need to meet the following criteria:
- Currently be receiving the Low Income Housing Rebate
- Hold a valid Pensioner Concession Card or a DVA Gold Card
- Own your own home
- Not already have solar PV installed
In addition, you will need to be living in one of the following regions:
- Central Coast
- North Coast
- Illawarra – Shoalhaven
- South Coast
How to apply for the NSW Solar for Low Income Households scheme
If you meet the eligibility requirements for the Solar for Low Income Households scheme, you can begin the application process online directly through the NSW Government’s EnergySaver website.
In order to apply you will need:
- A council rates notice or other evidence confirming you own your home
- A recent electricity bill as proof that you already receive the Low Income Household Rebate
- A scanned image of your Pensioner Concession Card or DVA Gold Card to show that it is valid and up to date
Once you’ve submitted your application and it’s been approved, your details will be sent to the assigned solar installer for your region. Once the solar installer receives your information, they will get in touch with your to organize your contract and installation date. After your solar PV system is installed, you’ll be moved off the Low Income Household Rebate and begin to receive the benefits of your new solar PV system.
New South Wales solar feed-in-tariffs
When you have a solar PV system installed on your property, the unused energy you generate gets sent back to the grid. Energy providers will pay you what is called a solar feed-in-tariff for the energy you send to the grid, which is credited off your energy bills.
Currently, the benchmark FiT rate in New South Wales is between 6c to 7.3c / kWh. This is just a guide, however, and energy providers set their own feed-in-tariff rates, which can vary greatly depending on a number of factors. Currently, the lowest solar FiT in New South Wales is 5.5c / kWh, while the highest 20c / kWh
|Minimum FiT||Maximum FiT|
|Origin Energy||7c / kWh||20c / kWh|
|Energy Locals||9.9c / kWh||14c / kWh|
|Click Energy||10c / kWh||16c / kWh|
|AGL||9.5c / kWh||17c / kWh|
|Amaysim Energy||10c / kWh||16c / kWh|
|Enova Energy||9c / kWh||16c / kWh|
One important thing to note is that many energy providers with higher feed-in-tariffs will offset the cost with less-discounted usage and supply rates. Deciding if you want to opt for a higher FiT or a bigger total discount depends on your home’s energy usage and personal circumstances.
|Higher FiT||Bigger total discount|
Solar rebate: Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme in NSW
The Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme is a government solar rebate initiative which gives customers “Small-scale technology certificates” (STCs) for their small-scale renewable energy generators. The certificates represent the amount of energy your solar PV system would generate over its lifetime, offsetting what would otherwise be drawn from the electricity grid. The bigger your solar PV system and the more energy it generates, the more STCs you’ll receive.
While trading these STCs can be done independently, it’s more common to assign them to your solar PV installer or supplier who will, in turn, give you a point-of-sale discount immediately to offset the upfront installation cost.