- Electricity bill savings. The Energy Saving Trust (EST) now estimates a typical 2.9kWp system can knock £90 to £180 off a family's bills, depending on system size, electricity use, whether you're at home during the day and other factors.
While solar panels can produce 50% of a home's electricity, often much of this gets pumped back to the grid. If energy prices rise significantly over 25 years as they are predicted to, you'll save more.
- Feed-in tariff payments. Back in 2010 the Government ditched grants for solar panels and replaced them with a generous scheme that pays for all the solar energy you produce, even if you use it yourself. The amount you earn depends on your system's size, but a typical payment could be £1,100/year (do your sums first).
Bizarrely, earnings from this scheme massively eclipse the electricity bill savings. Its predicted payments will be slashed for people installing after 1 April 2011; this wouldn't be surprising, as the cost's effectively met by higher energy bills, so is a bizarre poor-to-rich subsidy.