Decoding solar rebates for South Australians

If you have friends with solar, you’ve probably heard them talking about how much money they’ve saved. Their energy retailer might even be paying them. They’ve probably also mentioned that the Government has given them a helping hand in getting their solar up and running.

But there are so many rebates and incentive schemes – and they can vary from state to state – that it can all be a bit confusing.

If you’re trying to make heads or tails of rebates, don’t worry – we’ve compiled a list of all the solar energy incentives available to South Australian households, including who can receive them and how much is on offer.

Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme

This is a federal government program for households and small businesses that install small-scale renewable energy systems. The Clean Energy Regulator defines a small-scale solar panel system as one with 100kW of capacity or less – most household solar panel systems are around 6.6kW.

To be eligible, systems must:

  • Meet Australian and New Zealand standards
  • Use Clean Energy Council approved components
  • Have been designed and installed by a Clean Energy Council accredited professional
  • Comply with all local, state, and federal requirements.

Once you have an eligible system installed, you can create a Small-scale Technology Certificate (STC), which is equal to 1MWh of power generated by the system. These certificates can be sold to recoup a portion of the cost of the system, either on the open market or through the STC clearing house, which is essentially an STC marketplace operated by the Clean Energy Regulator, for a one-off maximum rebate of $35 per certificate.

A standard 6.6kW solar panel system with premium panels and inverter choice, in Adelaide, will cost approximately $10,000 inclusive of GST. The rebate will typically equate to around $3,500 which means the cash outflow for you as a customer will be $6,500 including GST (you’ll receive a 35% discount immediately on quotation).

South Australia’s Home Battery Scheme

The South Australian government operates the Home Battery Scheme to subsidise the purchase of an approved battery system.

The subsidy is calculated according to the capacity of the budget, with a rate of $500/kWh or $600/kWh for Energy Concession Holders. This means a battery with 5kWh of storage is eligible for a $2,500 subsidy, or $3,000 in the case of an Energy Concession Holder. The maximum subsidy available is $4,000 (and is likely to continue to reduce over time).

It’s important to note that once your battery has been connected, you will lose eligibility for any high legacy feed-in tariffs ($0.44/kWh) from your original solar installation. However, if your existing system is small with just a handful of panels then it probably makes sense to upgrade anyway.

A Clean Energy Council accredited installer will inform you if a battery system will suit your household’s energy needs, and if so, which type of battery is most beneficial.

Clipsal Solar have a special Solar + Storage Offer to keep you warm this winter: Learn more here!

Solar Feed-In Tariffs

Owners of an eligible solar system that is connected to the electricity grid may sell excess energy generated by their system back to their energy retailer (which typically varies between $0.07 and $0.18/kWh).

As part of its Clipsal Cortex Analytics Kit, Clipsal Solar offers a retail plan check; an ongoing, independent analysis of your existing retail plan, using an extensive tariff database* to benchmark your bills against actual usage and check which is the best plan for your energy consumption. On average we save our customers $312 per year, by using your data to find you the best plan. (*Savings based on actual data from South Australian homes using Clipsal Solar’s Clipsal Cortex Analytics Kit. Study from 2020.)

The amount of money you can earn through this scheme is dependent upon your retail energy tariff (rates), how much solar you produce, how much electricity you use, and when you use it. As an example, if your household only consumes half the amount of energy that your solar system produces, you could earn approximately $480 per year (this will vary – we have based these figures on a standard 6.6kW solar system with a feed-in tariff of $0.10/kWh).

So, how do I get my rebate?

Now that you have a better idea of what rebates and incentives are available, the next step is to contact Clipsal Solar or visit our showroom to arrange a consultation. We will analyse your household’s annual energy usage and advise you on the best system for your particular needs, as well as which rebates would then be available.

Clipsal Solar is not affiliated with any energy retailer, which means we review all available rebates and offer a Retail Plan Check to find the set-up that will save your household the most money.

Once we install your solar system, Clipsal Solar will take care of all the paperwork so you can just sit back and admire your return on investment. Right after you tell your friends!

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