For Families & Individuals

Renewable Energy

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​​​​​​​Solar in Ann Arbor 

Local solar installations are a key component of the City of Ann Arbor’s A2ZERO carbon neutrality work. Did you know, for example, that Ann Arbor compares favorably to cities implementing solar programs in other parts of the country and is sunnier than both Germany and Japan, countries that lead the world in solar energy use? Learn more about Solar at the Residential Consumer Guide to Solar Power or the Department of Energy’s Homeowner’s Guide to Going Solar.

Did you know? You can improve the impact of your solar panels by starting with energy efficiency improvements that reduce the total energy use of your home. This will also cut costs on household energy expenses. You can find more information about energy efficiency on our Green House page.

 

A​​nn Arbor Solarize is a city-run group buy program. Learn more here​.​​​​


To learn more or to sign-up for a Solarize event, please contact the Ann Arbor Solarize program coordinator, Julie Roth, at [email protected].


Solar Permitting

​The City of Ann Arbor offers expedited solar permitting for most residential installations. Only an electric permit is required, and we do not charge for line item solar fees, application fees, and plan reviews. Learn whether you are eligible for an expedited permit here when answering Section 2.

Commercial installations are required to pay file an application and pay the appropriate fee as outlined on the City's Building Department fee site​​.

Learn more about solar permitting in this checklist: P-1_Permitting Checklist_Ann Arbor_V4.pdf

Solar Maps and Potential 

Investigate your property’s solar potential on Project Sunroof or explore Ann Arbor’s solar potential here. You can also consider using any of the following tools to estimate your solar potential: 
  • Sun Number: Enter your address to find your estimated solar capacity, impact, and savings.
  • PV Watts Calculator: Enter information about your electricity use to run simulations on solar generation and costs throughout the year.
  • Energy Sage: Estimate payback periods and get quotes for your home from multiple solar installers online. Enter your address, and Energy Sage will contact you as they receive quotes from local contractors.​

Finding a Contractor and Going Solar 

Join an Ann Arbor Solarize event to find an installer and get a disciount on going solar. If, however, you'd prefer to move forward on your own, you can find a solar contractor (or two) to assess your home for solar energy and provide a bid. Certified practitioners can be found through Michigan Saves’ list of authorized contractors. 

​​Batteries​

​​​​The cost of batteries for storage of excess energy has been coming down.  Learn how you can pair a battery with your residential solar system for both storage and back-up generation capacity. More info about batteries​.


Financing, Incentives, and Tax Exemptions 

Typically solar installations are paid for through loans or cash, with Federal incentives available. There is a federal income tax deduction of 22% that applies to all installations performed in 2021.  This tax incentive has been sunsetting, and 2021 is the last year that these credits will be offered​.​

For those looking to finance, check out Michigan Saves is a non-profit green bank that provides low-interest financing for energy improvements, including solar photovoltaic installat​ions. Another handy resource is A Homeowner’s Guide to Solar Financing. 

 

City of Ann Arbor Solar Projects 

Preserving the health and sustainability of our climate has been valued by the Ann Arbor community for many years. It is important for the City to lead by example and has set a goal of powering municipal operations with 100% clean and renewable energy by 2035. Learn more about City solar installations. 
 

Fire Station 

Fire Station 6 near Briarwood Mall is the first City facility to come close to being net zero, with a solar installation that matches energy consumption during peak times.  

 

Farmers Market  

Solar energy provides ar​ound one-third of the Kerrytown Farmers Market annual electricity usage.   

Landfill Solar Project

The City is currently exploring a 22-24MW solar installation on the roof of the former landfill. This project is currently doing through technical review and more details will be available soon. For now, check out this FAQ​ to learn more about the potential project. 


Updated: 1/21/21​
 



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Click here for Ann Arbor Sol​​ariz​e!​​