Solar Panel Cost Florida: How Much Should You Pay?

Average National Cost
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$20,367 - $29,095

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Updated On

April 25, 2024

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The average Florida homeowner should expect to pay around $20,367 on average for solar panels after taking the federal solar investment tax credit (ITC). Without any incentives, the average price of a solar system in Florida is just over $29,000. In this article, I will cover the different factors that determine how much it costs to purchase a solar system in Florida, so you can make sure you’re getting a good deal and not paying more than you have to.

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How Much Do Solar Panels Cost in Florida?

The average cost per watt for a solar panel system in Florida is $2.53, and the average Florida household needs an 11.5 kilowatt (kW) system to offset its energy needs, which means that the total cost before any tax incentives come out to $29,095. Luckily, this number comes down to an average of $20,367 after the federal ITC, which is much more manageable.

Of course, the total price you pay depends on the size of the system you need, which in turn depends on the size of your home and how much energy you consume per month. The following table shows the average price of a solar energy system — before and after the federal tax credit — for various system sizes.

Solar System SizeEnergy Use (per month)House Size (square feet)Total Cost (before incentives)Cost After the Federal ITCEnergy Savings
9 kW900 kWh1,500$22,770$15,939$16,191
10 kW1,000 kWh1,700$25,300$17,710$17,990
11 kW1,100 kWh1,900$27,830$19,481$19,789
12 kW1,200 kWh2,100$30,360$21,252$21,588
13 kW1,300 kWh2,300$32,890$23,023$23,387
14 kW1,400 kWh2,500$35,420$24,794$25,186
15 kW1,500 kWh2,700$37,950$26,565$26,985

What Affects Florida Solar System Costs?

How much you have to pay for a solar system in Florida depends on three main factors:

  • The brand of equipment you install
  • The size of the system you need
  • The company you choose to perform the solar panel installation

These aren’t the only factors, but these are the ones that contribute the most to the final price you’ll see on your invoice. I’ll explain each factor in detail in the following sections.

The Equipment

Not all solar equipment is created equally. High-quality solar panels from premium companies like Maxeon cost around $3.30 per watt, while the statewide cost for panels in Florida is just $2.53. In many cases, it’s worth the extra expense to splurge for high-quality panels, but in Florida, I don’t think it’s necessary.

Florida is the tenth sunniest state in the country, which means you can save some money by choosing a panel that’s a little bit less energy-efficient without having to size up to meet your energy requirements. I often recommend QCells panels as a low-cost option with good efficiency characteristics and solid durability. Trina and Canadian Solar panels are good budget-friendly options as well.

Any other equipment you add to your solar system — like electric vehicle (EV) charging stations or solar batteries — will also increase the cost of your system. A high-quality solar battery like a Tesla Powerwall costs between $10,000 and $14,000, depending on where you have it installed. Remember that the federal solar tax credit applies to the total cost of your solar system, including the cost of extra equipment like batteries and car chargers.

Equipment that comes with your solar panels and is necessary to use them — like inverters, racks, etc. — are usually included in the quote you get from your solar installer, so you don’t have to worry about mentally tacking them onto your bill.

The Size of the System

This one is pretty straightforward. The average size of a solar system in Florida is 11.5 kW, which takes into account the average Florida household energy usage and the amount of energy a typical system can produce, given Florida’s weather. With the going rate for solar equipment in Florida sitting at $2.53, that means you should expect to pay about $29,000 for an 11.5 kW system.

Floridians consume more electricity than the residents of most other states, using 1,142 kilowatt-hours (kWh) each month compared to the national average of 893 kWh. That means that the average Florida household needs a slightly larger system to offset its monthly electricity bill, which raises the total cost of the average system in the state.

If you use less energy than the typical Florida homeowner, you might be able to get away with a 10 kW system, which would make the price you pay closer to $25,000 before the federal ITC or $17,700 after the tax credit.

The good news is that Florida gets more than enough sunshine each year to make it possible to get by with fewer panels than you’d need if you lived in a less sunny state like Maine or Montana, which helps keep installation costs a bit lower than they would otherwise be.

The Installation Company

Different solar installers charge different amounts for solar installations, even if you purchase the same type of solar panels. Solar companies routinely offer discounts that make certain systems more affordable while simultaneously upcharging for other systems with different equipment.

It all depends on what’s available when you make your purchase, so the best advice I can give you is to keep your options open and get as many solar quotes as you can from different companies. Most reputable solar installers in Florida will offer a free quote, so there’s no downside to taking your time and exploring your options before making a decision.


Featured Video: Learn Whether Solar Panels Are Worth it In Florida


Will You Be On the Hook for Any Other Solar Costs in Florida?

While the brand of equipment you choose, the size of the system you need, and your solar company’s solar panel installation costs make up the bulk of the cost of going solar in Florida, there are a few other costs you should know about.

  • Building permits: Florida state law requires you to obtain building permits before you can legally install rooftop solar on your home. These fees are often, but not always, included in the quote you get from a solar installer, so don’t be afraid to ask if it’s not clear. Solar permits in Florida vary by location but cost between $50 and $250 in most cases.
  • Admin fees: Some solar companies also charge admin fees to handle connecting your system to the grid and signing you up for net metering with your electric company. These charges also vary but shouldn’t add much to the overall cost.
  • Extra equipment: Don’t forget that adding extra equipment like EV chargers and battery backups to your system will significantly inflate the cost.
Highest Quality Panels

4.4

Available in all 50 states

Ability to see what the system will look like

Several panel options to choose from

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Best Solar Financing
blue raven logo

4.3

No payments needed for 18 months

Provides in-house financing

Offers top brands like LG and Trina

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Most Comprehensive Service

4.1

Outstanding customer service

Ethically-sourced products

Roof leak coverage

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Best Customer Service

3.9

Highly rated customer service

Provides  24/7 panel monitoring

Solid A+ rating with the BBB

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What Should Florida Homeowners Expect to Pay for Routine Solar Panel Maintenance?

Maintenance costs shouldn’t be much of an issue in Florida due to the frequent rainfall throughout the state. Regular maintenance is only needed in dry, dusty climates where sand or dirt gets carried by the wind and can settle on solar panels, giving them a fine coating that can reduce their exposure to sunlight.

Some companies will charge you for routine maintenance on a yearly basis, but most solar panel systems don’t need maintenance. I wouldn’t necessarily call regular maintenance packages a common solar scam, but they’re not something most solar customers need.

A visual inspection a few times a year is enough to catch problems before they become major issues. I recommend assessing your system’s health yourself and calling a maintenance technician as needed.

Of course, if something is wrong with your system’s electrical system, you’ll have to call your solar installer and have them come take a look. Luckily, most solar companies cover equipment malfunctions under their warranty. The best solar warranties cover solar panels for 25 years, so you most likely won’t have to pay out of pocket for any repairs.


Is Florida a Good State for Solar Panel Costs?

Solar panel costs per watt are much lower in Florida than they are in most states. The cost per watt for a solar power system in Florida is $2.53, which is $0.13 below the national average of $2.66 per watt. For an 11.5 kW system — the average system size in Florida — that means a total cost of $29,095 versus more than $30,500.

Unfortunately, comparing the cost of an 11.5 kW system in Florida to the cost of an 11.5 kW system in other states isn’t really the right comparison to make. Florida homeowners consume more energy battling the state’s heat and humidity than the residents of other states, which means that the average system size is higher in Florida than it is elsewhere.

A better comparison to make is the cost of a 9 kW system at the national average price of $2.66 per watt, with the cost of an 11.5 kW system at Florida’s average cost per watt of $2.53. The national average total cost comes out to $23,940, while the average total system cost in Florida is $29,095.

The bottom line is that Florida residents need to look for good financing options and take advantage of the state’s solar incentives to make it easier to afford a solar installation and encourage people to invest in renewable energy.


The Financing Option You Choose Will Impact Your Solar Savings in Florida

Paying in cash for a solar system is the best way to save the most money in the long run, but it’s not an option for many people. Thankfully, most solar companies provide several financing options to help customers afford their products. Here’s a quick look at the four main financing options people use to purchase solar panels:

Financing MethodTotal 25 Year SavingsUpfront CostsMonthly PaymentsPayback Period
Cash$21,632$20,367$012 years
Loan$16,500$0$85 – $21517 years
Lease$5,000$0$115N/A
PPA$4,000$0$115N/A
  • Cash: The simplest way to finance a solar panel system is to pay in full upfront. Paying in cash has the highest initial cost but also affords you the most savings long term since you start reaping the benefits of lower energy bills immediately. Making a cash purchase also makes you eligible for the federal ITC, which can effectively save you 30% of your system’s total cost by reducing your federal tax burden.
  • Solar loan: The second-best option is to finance your panels with a solar loan. Solar loans lead to panel ownership, which means they’re eligible for the federal ITC. It also means that you benefit from the value solar panels add to your home, which makes solar panels a good investment even if you plan to sell your home. Blue Raven Solar has the best solar financing program available in Florida. I recommend checking it out if you’re interested in taking out a solar loan.
  • Solar lease: Leases have lower upfront costs than loans or cash purchases and often come with no money down. The problem with solar leases is that you never pay off your system, which means you don’t wind up owning your panels. That means that you save far less money overall with a lease than with a loan. In general, I don’t recommend solar leases since they limit your savings and don’t increase your home’s value.
  • Power Purchase Agreement (PPA): The last option is to enter a PPA. These agreements let you purchase the energy produced by panels installed on your roof for a reduced rate that’s lower than the rate you pay your utility company. You don’t own the panels when you have a PPA, and you can think of it like buying electricity from a tiny power company that uses the panels on your roof instead of a coal plant to produce the energy. I also don’t recommend PPAs since you won’t save as much money as you would if you paid cash or took out a solar loan.

How Else Can Florida Homeowners Save Money When Going Solar?

Now that you understand where the total cost of a solar system comes from, I want to talk about how you can save money on a new solar panel system. A home solar panel array is a big investment for most Florida residents, so every little bit you can save matters.

Solar Incentives

I’ve already mentioned the federal solar tax incentive a few times, but now I want to briefly cover all of the incentives available to Florida residents in a little bit more detail.

The biggest incentive available to Floridians is indeed the federal ITC. This is a solar incentive administered by the U.S. government that offers 30% off your solar system’s total cost as a tax credit you can use to reduce your federal tax liability for the year when you have your solar panels installed. It’s important to realize that this is a tax credit and not a tax refund, so you will only benefit if you owe federal taxes.

Florida also has several state-level incentives that can help homeowners save even more money on the switch to solar energy. These include

  • Statewide net metering at the retail rate
  • Property tax exemption
  • Sales tax exemption
  • Local rebates from utility companies

Some of these incentives save you money one time, like the sales tax exemption, while others — like net metering and the property tax exemption — save you money throughout your solar system’s entire life.

Net metering is especially good for saving money since it helps offset your monthly utility bills by paying you for any excess energy your panels generate. That means that you can effectively use the energy your panels produce when it’s sunny to cover your energy bills when they’re not producing, like at nighttime or on cloudy days.

Florida power companies are required to offer net metering, so you’ll have access to it no matter where you live in the state.

Check out this article about Florida solar incentives to learn about each incentive in more detail.

Skip the Solar Batteries

Solar batteries are a great way to store any excess energy your panels produce for later, but they’re not as beneficial in a state like Florida with a quality net metering program. Florida’s net metering laws require that utility companies credit their customers at the full retail electricity rate, which means you can save just as much money through net metering as you can by storing it yourself.

I should mention that the trend in net metering throughout the country is to move to a system that credits solar customers at the avoided-cost rate rather than the retail rate. The avoided-cost rate is lower than the retail rate, which means that customers don’t get compensated as much for the energy their systems produce. I don’t know if Florida will move to such a system in the future, but it’s a possibility, in which case batteries would definitely be beneficial.

Another point to consider is that battery backups also make power outages much more manageable, especially in Florida, where blackouts happen more frequently than in other states.

Choose a Less Efficient Panel

If money were no object, everybody would build their solar system with Maxeon panels since they have the highest efficiency rating on the market today. Unfortunately, money is a major concern for most would-be solar customers, and Maxeon’s panels cost much more than the average panel.

Florida homeowners are lucky that they live in one of the country’s sunniest states, which means they can get away with a less efficient panel. High-efficiency panels like the ones Maxeon makes are great for squeezing every last watt out of sunlight, but that’s not necessary in Florida. If you’re on a tight budget, a great way to save money is to opt for a less efficient panel.

I recommend asking your solar installer what brands it carries before you commit to using them. QCells and REC solar panels are both tier-one panels that offer an excellent tradeoff between cost and efficiency which makes them a perfect choice in Florida.


How Much Do Florida’s Solar Installers Charge?

The Florida state average I’ve mentioned throughout this guide doesn’t convey the variation in prices you’ll see from different installers. How much your solar installer charges will depend on the equipment you choose, its labor rates, and any additional charges like administration fees or permitting fees.

Here’s a brief look at Florida’s best solar installers, including my opinion on what each company does best and an estimate of its average cost.

Solar CompanySuperlativeTH RatingBBB RatingAverage Cost
SunPowerBest National Provider5.0 / 5.0A+$$$$
ADT SolarBest Solar Warranty4.9 / 5.0A-$$$
Blue Raven SolarBest Solar Financing4.8 / 5.0A+$$
Momentum SolarBest Customer Service4.6 / 5.0A+$$$
SunVenaOutstanding Local Installer4.5 / 5.0A+$$$$
Solar BearOutstanding Local Installer4.3 / 5.0A+$$$

In general, solar has been getting more affordable in Florida over the last decade. The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) reports that the cost of solar in Florida has fallen 54% over the last ten years. It is natural to assume that the trend will continue as monocrystalline photovoltaic (PV) technology becomes more mainstream and cheaper to manufacture, but that’s not a guarantee.

I expect that solar costs in Florida will be lower in the next five to ten years, but I don’t think it’s worth waiting to install solar later, hoping for lower prices. Investing in solar panels now will let you start saving money on electric bills sooner, offsetting the money you’d save by waiting for lower prices.

Additionally, experts expect the cost of electricity to increase in Florida for the foreseeable future due to inflation and the increasing scarcity of fossil fuels used in commercial power plants.

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Here are the answers to a few of the questions people ask me most often about the cost of solar panels in Florida.

FAQs About Florida Solar Panel Costs

Are solar panels in Florida worth it?

Yes, solar panels are definitely worth it for most homeowners in Florida. Even though the cost of solar is higher in Florida than it is in most other states, the potential lifetime savings means that you’ll save money in the long run by switching to solar. It only takes 12 years to pay back your initial investment, and the average Florida household stands to save $21,632 over the course of 25 years.


How long does it take for solar panels to pay for themselves in Florida?

The average payback period in Florida is 12 years, assuming you pay cash for your system and that you purchase an average 11.5-kW system. Financing your system with a solar loan lengthens the payback period and reduces your lifetime savings.


How much can solar panels save in Florida?

On average, the typical Florida homeowner saves $21,632 over the course of the average system’s 25-year lifespan. That estimate assumes that you pay for your panels in cash, purchase an average-sized 11.5-kW system, and that your energy consumption is around the statewide average of 1,142 kWh per month.


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Dan Simms

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Dan Simms worked in real estate management for five years before using his experience to help property owners maintain their own homes. He got his master’s degree in English Literature and Creative Writing, and he now enjoys sharing his knowledge about homeownership and DIY projects with others on Today’s Homeowner. When he’s not writing, he’s usually outdoors with his wife and his dog, enjoying mountain biking, skiing, and hiking.

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Lora Novak

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Lora Novak meticulously proofreads and edits all commercial content for Today’s Homeowner to guarantee that it contains the most up-to-date information. Lora brings over 12 years of writing, editing, and digital marketing expertise. She’s worked on thousands of articles related to heating, air conditioning, ventilation, roofing, plumbing, lawn/garden, pest control, insurance, and other general homeownership topics.

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