30% Federal Tax Credit

The federal government has put forth an incredible incentive for those considering solar power. 30% of the eligible costs related to your solar project can be taken as a federal tax credit. As long as you or your business pays federal income taxes you can take advantage of this incentive.

Keep in mind this is not merely a tax deduction. Tax deductions only reduce the income on which you pay taxes. Tax credits reduce your tax which means that every dollar of the tax credit is a dollar in your pocket.

Here’s a tax deduction example

Supposed your annual gross income is $50,000 and you have $6,000 in tax deductions (mortgage interest, health insurance premiums, etc) leaving you with $44,000 in taxable income. Furthermore, suppose that your tax rate is 25%. In this example you would pay $11,000 in taxes on $44,000 of income. Without the $6,000 in deductions, you would pay $12,500 in taxes on all $50,000 of income. The $6,000 in tax deductions saved you from paying $1,500 in actual tax dollars.

Here’s a tax credit example

Supposed you still make $50,000 annually and you still have $6,000 tax deductions, making your taxable income $44,000. Your tax rate is still 25% which means your total tax liability is $11,000. Now let’s say you had solar installed this year and the total system cost was $35,000. The federal tax credit on a $35,000 system would be $10,500 ($35,000 x 30%). Once the $10,500 solar tax credit is applied to your $11,000 tax liability, you’ll now only have $500 in tax liability.

Be sure and talk to your tax preparer to make sure a federal tax credit can benefit you.

Energy Trust of Oregon Incentive

Customers of Portland General Electric and Pacific Power are able to take advantage of this excellent cash incentive. The Energy Trust of Oregon (ETO) will pay a substantial portion of the cost of your solar installation as long as your home or business meets their site requirements. We’ll determine your eligibility during our site assessment.

If your site qualifies for an ETO incentive, we are required to give you that incentive at the signing of the installation agreement, out of our pocket, in the form of an immediate reduction of your project cost. Once the system has been installed and has passed all inspections and verifications, we are reimbursed by the ETO. If you’re a commercial customer you can choose to pay the full project cost and receive the cash incentive directly from the ETO.

Homeowner (Owning)

If you’re a homeowner and you own your solar system the ETO will pay as follows:

I’m a Customer of:Incentive
Pacific Power$500
Portland General Electric$400

Solar Within Reach

Solar Within Reach makes going solar more affordable for income-qualified households. Solar + storage systems are also eligible. With increased cash incentives, an Oregon rebate and a federal tax credit, powering your home with solar may be within reach. In addition to eligibility, you must own and live in a single-family home, manufactured home, floating home, condo or multifamily residence that is either an attached side-by-side unit or a duplex, triplex or fourplex. You must also meet Energy Trust’s income qualifications listed below.

Household SizeGross Annual Income MAX
1 Resident$55,610
2 Resident$72,722
3 Resident$89,832
4 Resident$106,944
5 Resident$124,056
6 Resident$141,166
7 Resident$147,582

Energy Trust cash incentives dependent on system size and utility bill.

Portland General Electric$1.10/watt$6,000 Maximum Incentive per home
Pacific Power$1.00/watt$6,000 Maximum Incentive per home

If you believe you qualify for Solar Within Reach, please visit the Energy Trust of Oregon webpage to establish eligibility.

Solar Within Reach – Energy Trust of Oregon

Business Owner

If you’re a business owner and you own your system the ETO will pay as follows:

I’m a Customer of:Incentive per WattMaximum Incentive
Pacific Power$0.18/W$18,000 (at 200 kW)
Annual customer cap: $18,000 (at 200 kW)
Maximum eligible project size: 200kW
Portland General Electric$0.18/W$18,000 (at 400 kW)
Annual customer cap: $18,000 (at 400 kW)
Maximum eligible project size: 400kW

Click here for more details about the Energy Trust of Oregon solar incentive program.

Oregon Department of Energy

As part of the push for more renewable energy, Oregon Department of Energy developed a new Oregon Solar + Storage Rebate Program that can help you offset the cost of installing a new solar project on your home. As a preferred contractor, Premier Solar NW can help you receive a rebate towards new solar panels, storage battery, or both. For more information about this rebate program, please visit State of Oregon: INCENTIVES – Oregon Solar + Storage Rebate Program

Oregon Solar + Storage Rebate Program: Homeowners

Oregon Department of Energy classifies three customer types. Correlating rebates are listed below:

Customer TypeSolar Rebate CalculationSolar + Storage Rebate
Low or Moderate income homeowners$1.80/watt (DC) of installed capacity, up to 60% of the net cost* or $5,000, whichever is lessSolar Incentive + $2,500 Storage rebate
Homeowners not considered low or moderate income, who are also eligible for an electric utility incentive$0.20/watt (DC) of installed capacity, up to 40% of the net cost or $5,000, whichever is lessSolar Incentive + $2,500 Storage rebate
Homeowners not considered low or moderate income, who are not eligible for an electric utility incentive$0.50/watt (DC) of installed capacity, up to 40% of the net cost or $5,000, whichever is lessSolar Incentive + $2,500 Storage rebate

*ODOE defines the net cost of a system as the total of all eligible costs minus any incentive provided by an electric utility or by Energy Trust of Oregon.

For more information about eligibility, please visit State of Oregon: INCENTIVES – Oregon Solar + Storage Rebate Program: Homeowners

Customers interested in solar with paired storage systems should consult with us about what type of battery installation will work best for them. A system must be installed with “islanding” capability (the ability to stand alone apart from the grid) to be able to provide power in the event of a power outage or grid failure.

Net Metering

Not only will you be selling the electricity your solar panels generate but you’ll also avoid having to buy that electricity from your power company. Net metering is a billing mechanism that credits solar energy system owners for the electricity they add to the grid. For example, your home or business may generate more electricity than is used during daylight hours. With net metering, the electricity meter will run backwards to provide a credit against what electricity is consumed at night or other periods where the electricity use exceeds the solar system’s output. Customers are only billed for their “net” energy consumption.

Just as the electricity coming from your power company goes to your electrical panel (breaker box) for you to use, the electricity from your solar system will also go to your electrical panel. You’ll use the solar electricity first, then you’ll use your power company for any additional electricity needs you may have.

​Let’s say for example that your home typically uses 20,000 kWh of electricity each year, without solar. Now suppose you have a solar system installed that generates 9,000 kWh of electricity each year. Instead of having to buy all 20,000 kWh of electricity from your power company each year, you’ll only have to buy 11,000 because your solar panels will provide the rest.

Understanding Net Metering


Solar Array

Solar array converts energy from sunlight into electricity.



The inverter converts the electricity produced by the solar array from direct current (DC) to alternating current (AC) for use in your home, school, or business and measures the energy produced by the solar array.



The energy is used in your home, school, or business.


Bidirectional Meter

The Bidirectional Meter indicates energy usage and excess energy produced.

Hear What People Have To Say!

Here are some actual reviews from some of our Portland clients:

We had a great experience, working with Premier Solar NW! Everything went very smoothly!
Premier Solar Northwest
Adam R., Portland, OR
Very Professional at a very good price. Started and finished when they said and took care of everything, like permits, inspections, etc. I didn’t have to do a thing.
Premier Solar Northwest
David M., Portland, OR