Below you’ll find the top solar companies in New Hampshire as ranked by us and reviewed by verified solar customers. To learn more about what goes into our “Best Rank” score for each company, visit our How We Rank page. For our full New Hampshire Solar Overview, keep reading:
With no state income tax, no state property tax, and a wide selection of solar incentives and solar-friendly legislation, New Hampshire is quickly becoming one of the more competitive states for solar adoption. Electricity prices in New Hampshire (20 cents per kilowatt-hour) are far higher than the national average (13 cents); and as you’ll see below, the actual cost of going solar is much lower in New Hampshire than it is in other states.
Read on to learn more about the ins and outs of going solar in New Hampshire.
Here's an at-a-glance description of the current benefits and drawbacks of switching to solar in New Hampshire:
The levelized cost of going solar in New Hampshire comes out to about 5 cents per kWh, which, compared to the cost of not going solar (42 cents) is incredibly low. Levelized cost represents the total cost of the solar system divided by the savings over the 25-year lifespan of the system.
In terms of real dollars and cents, a 6.2 kW solar PV system in New Hampshire only goes for about $18,000 — that’s before the 30 percent federal tax credit and other state-level incentives take effect. And depending on energy efficiency, system capacity, and other factors, that cost can actually be much lower, even as low as $11,000.
New Hampshire residents have four ways to invest in solar energy: outright purchase, solar loan, solar lease, and power purchase agreement (PPA):
In New Hampshire, a 6.2 kW solar energy system costs around $18,000. Once the federal solar tax credit is applied, that amount gets reduced to a little less than $13,000. Solar power rebates in the state can further reduce that number by up to $1,000, meaning solar customers will have ample solar energy for about $12,000 in total.
Because electricity prices in the Granite State are so high, so are the savings by switching to solar. Consequently, customers who finance their solar panel systems through cash purchase can recoup their savings after only about six years. Assuming about $1,500 in annual solar savings, a typical solar panel system will have earned more than $33,000 after 25 years — a pretty amazing investment for only $12,000 upfront.
Home values also increase by an average of $17,000 for that size of system.
After direct purchase, financing through a solar loan or home-equity line of credit (HELOC) is the next most profitable financing option available to New Hampshire residents. Assuming a 15-year repayment plan, 4 percent APR, and zero money down for an $18,000 loan, solar borrowers can start saving on their utility bill from day one! Add the federal solar tax credit into the equation, and they’ll actually have just about broken even during the system’s first year of operation (only netter -$100 or so).
The unfortunate part of financing through a loan is that loan payments will typically run higher than utility payments for the majority of the loan. But as electricity prices continue to rise each year, that gap will get smaller and smaller every year. After the 15-year term is up, solar loan borrowers will have 10 years of net profit to the tune of about $26,000 or more.
With standard leasing, homeowners essentially rent their solar systems, rather than own them. This leaves the cost of installation and maintenance with the solar company. Assuming a 5 kW system with a 20-year leasing contract, solar lessees will have saved about $14,000 total — without so much as fronting a down payment.
Similar to a solar lease, a PPA works as a form of renting, only instead of renting the system, customers are paying for the monthly energy output of the system. Customers will also experience similar savings to a solar lease, approximately $17,000 after 20 years of operation.
One of the most compelling reasons to go solar in New Hampshire is the state’s lack of income and sales taxes, which results in hundreds, if not thousands of dollars’ worth of savings over 25 years. Homeowners do not need to pay taxes on the equipment or materials used in their solar energy systems, and, depending on where they live in the state, could also be exempted from paying taxes on the property value increase their system brings about. In addition to these perks, New Hampshire offers residents the following:
New Hampshire’s solar power rebate program is one of the best in the nation. The rebates apply statewide at $250 per installed kW of solar energy (cap at $1,000), plus an additional $250 per kW for customers of the New Hampshire Electric Co-Op (NECO) with a cap at $1,375.
New Hampshire also offers a drastically discounted rate for its community solar projects. Panels can be roof-mounted or ground-mounted for up to five residential users at a time whose income is at or below 300 percent the federal poverty guidelines. Total rate for this community solar initiative: 3 cents per kWh.
In terms of solar policy in the state, the high cost of electricity has produced plenty of additional incentives for New Hampshire to reduce its carbon footprint and make solar power more accessible to residents and businesses alike.
A state’s renewable portfolio standard represents a goal the state has set for itself and its utility companies to achieve a certain level of renewable energy adoption by a set deadline, and affixes stiff penalties to utility providers that fail to meet that standard. In New Hampshire’s case, that standard is 24.8 percent renewable energy by 2025, with a 0.3 percent carve-out for solar power.
Currently, the state has already met its solar carve-out goal, with 0.67 percent solar output as of 2020, but still has some ground to cover if it’s going to meet that 2025 goal.
Net metering is simply a policy that requires utility providers to credit solar users for the surplus solar energy their systems produce each month. Thankfully, New Hampshire has a statewide net metering policy that applies to all utility companies to follow this rule, crediting users on their next utility bill and allowing unlimited carry over from month to month. Customers can also elect for an annual credit if their surplus is more than 600 kWh after a year.
As for interconnection rules, despite a statewide policy setting a standard for solar energy systems before they can plug into the power grid, the requirements among utility providers are all over the map, with some requiring additional insurance or an external shutdown switch to be installed prior to interconnection.
Despite ranking low among reporting states for solar output (41st and 122 megawatts respectively), New Hampshire has made great strides in residential solar adoption over the years, which accounts for more than half of all solar installations (8,700) since 2013. New Hampshire is currently producing enough solar energy to power nearly 20,000 homes, and hosts more than 50 solar installers and manufacturers employing over 1,000 total solar experts.
Interested in a solar quote? Check out the top-ranked solar companies in New Hampshire and read reviews from verified solar customers.