Homeowners wanting a long-term solution to reducing their electricity bills take note: There is still time to take advantage of government incentives to install rooftop solar power systems. Despite being available on a sliding scale since January 1, the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES) creates a financial incentive for homeowners to install certain, small-scale solar installations such as solar hot water systems and rooftop solar panel systems.

Master electrician and managing director of Solar Power Direct, Paul Maiolo says under SRES, eligible solar panel systems are entitled to a number of small-scale technology certificates or STCs. “This is based on the amount of electricity in megawatt hours (MWh) the system generates over the course of the solar panels lifetime,’’ he says. Before January 1, rooftop solar systems received 15 years worth of STCs in advance when installed. Now it’s down to 14 years worth and will continue to decrease each year until 2030, when the rebate ends. “While lower, there are still rebates available when purchasing solar,’’ Paul says.

“For the average homeowner who purchases a 5kW solar system, a rebate of $4000 is still available.’’ If you wait five years, the incentive will have dropped to a little more than $2500. Paul says people who live in the Adelaide City Council area are also offered incentives for rooftop solar and battery storage systems under the Sustainability Incentives Scheme (subject to the fund’s limits). Adelaide is seen as a solar panel hotspot because it has fewer cloudy days than other cities in Australia, underlining the value of solar power for South Australian consumers.

Solar Power Direct is accredited by the national Clean Energy Council and offers expert supply and installation services to ensure your home or business maximises the benefits from going solar. This includes supplying solar battery storage solutions so you can store excess solar energy generated for use in peak times. The price of solar panel systems has dropped over time and if you use a lot of electricity, solar panel systems can save you a significant amount of money, Paul says.

Solar Power Direct, 7226 0560, solarpowerdirect.org