Are Solar Panels A Good Investment

Installing solar panels will save you money on your energy bills.

With the Feed-in Tariff you will earn money for the electricity you use as well as being able to sell back any electricity you don't use to the grid.

For an accurate assessment of your homes earning potential, fill out the form above.


Are solar panels cost effective?

How much do solar panels cost?

The average domestic solar panel installation will cost between £4000 and £6000. Prices will vary dependent on the size of the system. You can see the average price of a solar panel installation in the table below. Read more on Solar Panel Cost.

Cost of Solar Panel Installation (Table)


Approximate Roof Space

Typical System Size
Estimated Cost (£)

Estimated Annual Output

CO2 saved over 25 years (tonnes)

Estimated First Year Return
Profit Over 20 years
8m2
1kW
2,500-3,000
850kWh
10
£184
£650
14m2
2kW
3,000-4,000
1,700kWh
20
£368
£3,800
21m2
3kW
4,000-6,000
2,550kWh
30
£534
£5,635
28m2
4kW
6,000-8,000
3,400kWh
40
£700
£6,750



How much money will I save?

Installing Solar Panels will save you around £700 a year. In the below tables you can see how this saving is broken down between savings to your energy bills, earnings from the Feed-in Tariff and selling excess energy back to the grid.

Over 20 years you can expect a save and earn around £14,000. Once you take away the cost of installation this is a profit of close to £7000. After the 20 year period you will no longer earn money from the Feed-in Tariff, however you will continue to generate your own electricity and in doing so save on your energy bills.

Ofgem have estimated that standard electricity prices will continue to rise by 20% by 2020, with this in mind it is certainly a good time to invest in solar panels.

Take a look at the tables below to find out what you can save

Savings Each Year (Table)


Source of Income

What you can save/earn
Generation Tariff
£490
Export Tariff
£80
Electricity Bill Savings
£125
Total per year
£695

*Based on a 3.5kWp Domestic System

Savings Over 20 Years (Table)


Amount of Years

Earnings/Savings

Profit/loss
Year 1
£695
-£6305
Year 5
£3475
-£3525
Year 10
£6950
-£50
Year 15
£10425
£3425
Year 20
£13900
£6760


Are solar panels worth it?




Energy Saving Benefits

The UK is set to face increasingly high energy costs over the coming decades, as climate policy tightens and oil prices rise. Figures from the Department of Energy and Climate Change show electricity prices are expected to rise 40% over the next 10 years.

Energy companies are legally bound by the Government to pay out Feed in Tariffs for 20 years. This money has to be recouped from somewhere and energy companies are likely to raise their prices even more to cover these pay outs. Energy customers who do not install solar panels will effectively be subsidising those who do.


To get and accurate and personal assesment of how much money you could save and earn with a solar installation complete the form at the top of the page. It is free, easy and quick to do.


Feed-in tariff

The Feed-in Tariff (FiT) scheme launched in April 2010, it pays solar panels owners for the electricity they produce.

The rate at which this Feed-in Tariff scheme now offers 14.90p per unit of electricity produced. In addition solar panel homes will receive 4.64p per unit for any unused electricity which is returned to the national grid. At these rates, approximately £700 a year can be made following this scheme. The UK government has promised this scheme will last at least 20 years and all payments will rise with inflation and, most importantly, be tax free. Over the 20 years owners can expect to see the earnings of around £14000 and a return of investment after 10 years.

The amount of energy you can expect to generate depends to on a variety of factors including location, shading and size. A family home with a southwest facing roof can expect to produce enough energy from a 4kW solar panel system to power itself.

Here are the latest FiT rates:


Band (kW)

Standard Generation Tariff (p/kWh) eligibility date after 1 Feb 2103 and before 1 May 2013
Standard Generation Tariff (p/kWh) eligibility date after 1 May 2013 and before 1 July 2013
Standard Generation Tariff (p/kWh) eligibility date on or after 1 July 2013 and before 1 October 2013
4kW or less
15.44p/kWh
15.44p/kWh
14.90p/kWh
>4 – 10 kW
13.99p/kWh
13.99p/kWh
13.50p/kWh
>10 - 50 kW
13.03p/kWh
13.03p/kWh
12.57p/kWh
>50 – 100 kW
11.50p/kWh
11.10p/kWh
11.10p/kWh
>100 – 150 kW
11.50p/kWh
11.10p/kWh
11.10p/kWh
>150 – 250 kW
11.00p/kWh
10.62 p/kWh
10.62p/kWh
>250 kw – 5 mW
7.10p/kWh
6.85p/kWh
6.85p/kWh
Stand - alone
7.10p/kWh
6.85p/kWh
6.85p/kWh

Are there any drawbacks?

The main concern for people considering solar panels is the cost. The cost of solar panels has fallen substantially in the past three years, however, and installation, dependent on size and specification can still cost up to £9000.

With the FiT the return on investment is around 10 years. However if the initial cost is a concern, there are multiple companies that offer a finance package with zero upfront costs and also free solar panel schemes.

For more on these schemes, complete the form at the top of the page, or alternatively visit Solar Panel Grants and Loans

Secondly knowing if your home is suitable for solar panels can be complicated. Thankfully we have a solar energy calculator tool that allows for your home's position and roof size to be taken into consideration - click here to use. In addition solar panel technologies are evolving very quickly, this means that roof location is becoming a diminishing factor as cell efficiency improves.





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