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Payback and ROI of Solar Energy for Farms & Businesses 2021

Solar for Businesses | 6 min read
Solar Energy's payback and ROI for Businesses in 2021

Installing solar panels requires an upfront investment. The return on that investment and the length of the payback period is often a big factor for those deciding whether or not to go solar.

However, the return on your investment will vary greatly depending on a few factors. These include things like the amount and cost of electricity you use, your system’s size, the system's installation cost, and your local weather.

 

To help give a general idea of the value of a solar system, we’ve compiled investment data from solar energy systems we’ve installed over the last year. These averages are grouped by state and market sector (agricultural or commercial), allowing you to take a look at what others in your area are saving with solar. The data includes the average ROI on solar panels, as well as the average payback period for solar panels.

It’s important to note that the numbers included below will likely be different from those you’d see on your custom solar system. The best way to find out how beneficial a solar energy system is for you is to get a free quote that would be customized to your situation.

Not a farm or business? Check out our blog on the ROI and payback for solar energy for homes.  

Agricultural

Commercial

Agricultural Solar Paybacks in 2021

Farmers have always depended on energy from the sun to grow crops. Now, many farmers also utilize sunshine to provide electricity to power their farms and save money on energy bills. 

Fox-Chase_Poultry-House-With-Solar-Panels_1Regardless of whether you raise livestock or crops, farms can use a great deal of electricity. Solar energy can help you gain control of rising energy costs, slashing your overhead and boosting your bottom line. 

Farmers from Virginia to Upstate New York are seeing first-hand the economic benefits of an investment in solar energy.

Solar for Delaware Farmers

Average System Size: 156.61 kW

Average Annual Production: 196,831 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for Delaware Farmers?

Farmers in Delaware see an average ROI of 15.83% on their solar panel installation.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for Delaware Farmers? 

On average, an agricultural solar system in Delaware will pay for itself in 7.5 years. That leaves decades of the solar system’s 30+ year lifespan to produce free solar electricity. 

Solar for Maryland Farmers

Average System Size: 106.72 kW

Average Annual Production: 133,062 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for Maryland Farmers? 

An average solar system installed on a Maryland farm will have an ROI of 15.6%.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for Maryland Farmers? 

The average Maryland farm will pay off its solar panel system in just 6.8 years. That leaves over 25 years in the solar system’s 30+ year lifespan to produce free electricity. 

Solar for New York Farmers

Average System Size: 21.41 kW

Average Annual Production: 24,843 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for New York Farmers? 

New York farmers, on average, can expect a solar panel ROI of 12.1%.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for New York Farmers? 

8.33 years is the solar panel payback period for the average agricultural system in New York. That leaves at least 22 years of the solar system’s 30+ year lifespan of free electricity. 

Solar for Ohio Farmers

Average System Size: 27.34 kW

Average Annual Production: 29,580 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for Ohio Farmers? 

On average, Ohio farmers can expect a 9.75% ROI on their solar systems.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for Ohio Farmers? 

In just 12.5 years, the average farmer in Ohio will pay off their PV system. That leaves nearly two decades of the solar system’s 30+ year lifespan to provide free electricity.

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Solar for Pennsylvania Farmers

Average System Size: 95.47 kW

Average Annual Production: 107,842 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for Pennsylvania Farmers? 

A solar system installed on a Pennsylvania farm has an average ROI of 13.57%.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for Pennsylvania Farmers? 

Pennsylvania farms will pay off their solar systems with electricity savings in less than 8.6 years. That leaves over two decades of solar’s 30+ year lifespan to provide free electricity.

Solar for Virginia Farmers

Average System Size: 117.95 kW

Average Annual Production: 142,068 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for Virginia Farmers? 

A solar investment can provide a 16.8% ROI on average for Virginia farms.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for Virginia Farmers? 

In just 7.5 years, the average agricultural solar system in Virginia will have paid for its solar system.

Commercial Solar Paybacks in 2021

Solar system at ProVia-Cherry-Ridge_2Cutting costs for your business means increased profits. But only if those cost-cutting measures don’t interfere with production, service, or quality. 

Solar energy offers a way to do just that. 

Tax credits and other savings make the upfront investment easy, keeping paybacks short and ROI's high.

Solar for Delaware Businesses

Average System Size: 25.08 kW

Average Annual Production: 31,607 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for Delaware Businesses? 

The average Delaware business can expect a 12.4% ROI on their solar investments.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for Delaware Businesses? 

The average business will pay off their solar system in 8 years, leaving decades in the solar system’s 30+ year lifespan to produce free electricity. 

Solar for Maryland Businesses

Average System Size: 68.06 kW

Average Annual Production: 75,552 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for Maryland Businesses? 

Maryland businesses, on average, enjoy a 14.08% ROI on their solar investments.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for Maryland Businesses? 

So far in 2019, the average business will pay off their solar system in 7 years. That leaves decades in the solar system’s 30+ year lifespan to produce free electricity. 

Solar for New York Businesses

Average System Size: 96.76 kW

Average Annual Production: 102,821 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for New York Businesses? 

Solar systems will earn New York businesses, on average, an 11.53% ROI.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for New York Businesses? 

So far in 2019, the average business in New York will pay off its solar system in 8 years. That leaves over two decades in the solar system’s 30+ year lifespan to produce free electricity. 

Solar for Ohio Businesses

Average System Size: 54.78 kW

Average Annual Production: 61,527 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for Ohio Businesses? 

Ohio businesses will get a 9.08% ROI for their solar systems on average.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for Ohio Businesses? 

The average business in Ohio will pay off their system in 11.45 years, leaving nearly two decades of the solar system’s expected lifespan.

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Solar for Pennsylvania Businesses

Average System Size: 225.9 kW

Average Annual Production: 252,740 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for Pennsylvania Businesses? 

A solar system can provide an average ROI of 12.74% for Pennsylvania businesses.

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for Pennsylvania Businesses? 

Pennsylvania businesses will pay off their solar systems with electricity savings in less than 8.7 years.

Solar for Virginia Businesses

Average System Size: 100.87 kW

Average Annual Production: 111,884 kWh 

What’s the Average ROI of Solar for Virginia Businesses? 

Virginia businesses can earn a 14.1% ROI on their solar investment. 

What’s the Average Payback of Solar for Virginia Businesses? 

In just nine years, the average Virginia business will have paid for its solar system with the money saved from its solar system. That leaves over two decades of the solar system’s 30+ year expected lifespan.

Solar Investment Data Summary

Solar PV Return on Investment

Average ROI for All Agricultural Projects: 13.94%

Average ROI for All Commercial Projects: 12.32%

Business Solar Energy ROI 2021Solar ROI in 2021 for Farmers

A good way to determine the value of your solar system’s ROI is to compare it to the ROI of investing in stocks. Most agree that an average, long-term investment in stocks should provide about a 10% ROI.

In most states, solar energy investments for farms and businesses offer a higher return than that 10%. Additionally, the risks associated with investing in solar energy are far less than investing in the stock market.

With solar, your return is dependent on the sun shining and your need for electricity. Both are all but guarantees. With the stock market, you’re dependent on the company you’ve invested in to turn a profit despite unpredictable consumer preferences.

Your solar proposal should include the ROI for your specific system. And as long as you're working with a trusted, reputable solar installer, it’s typical that the ROI on the estimate is the ROI you’ll see. And with Paradise Energy’s Triple Ten Guarantee, it’s even safer.

Break-Even Point for Solar Panels in 2021

Average Payback for Farm’s Solar Panels: 8.53 Years

Average Payback for Business’s Solar Panels: 8.69 Years

Average Solar Panel Payback for businesses in 2021Average Solar Panel Payback for farmers in 2021

Solar systems gradually pay for themselves through the free electricity they produce. Instead of paying your monthly electricity bill from the utility, you can put it towards paying for the upfront cost of the solar system.

But unlike the never-ending bills from the utility company, you’ll eventually finish paying for your system. After that, everything you save on your energy bills goes right to your bottom line for the remainder of the system’s life.

Many solar panel manufacturers guarantee their solar panels for 25 or 30 years. That means they should be generating free electricity for at least that long. In our data set, these warranties expire long after the average payback periods. And once the warranty expires, your system may very well continue to produce plenty of free energy for years to come.

Discover Your Solar ROI and Payback

Are you interested to see how solar energy could benefit your business or farm? The first step is to request your free custom quote. Your quote will provide a complete picture of what a solar investment would look like, including the installation cost, available incentives, ROI, and payback.Request Your Custom Solar Quote

If you're not ready for a quote, visit our other blog posts or download our Solar Buying Guide to learn more about a solar investment. 

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