Learn about the Hawaii Solar Tax Credit

Just how big is the Hawaii solar tax credit?

Tax Credits do a lot to make solar affordable, and Hawaii is no exception to states offering large and lucrative tax credits for putting solar panels on your roof.

These credits work the same as any tax credit: you put the cash up front and then write off that amount the next time you file your taxes. Although that can seem like a long time to wait, rest assured that the savings you’ll reap on the solar panels will outweigh the seemingly large financial outlay.

What is the solar tax credit in Hawaii?

As we’ve discussed on the Hawaii solar incentives page here at HawaiiSolarHQ, the tax credit in the Aloha state is 35% of the cost of the solar installation, or $5,000, whichever is less. Not bad just for putting up solar panels.

The nice part about credit is that it combines with the Federal solar tax credit, which is also 30% off the the top of installation costs. Combined, these go a long way to bring the system down into the affordability range.

*Please note that whenever we talk about “solar” on this site we’re generalizing about solar panels. Solar thermal installations also have a tax credit of 35% but only up to $2,250. Also note that the max credit for commercial installations is much, much larger.

Recent changes to Tax Credits in Hawaii

While these credits are available there has been some recent rule-changing intended to clamp down on a few loopholes. The regulations basically clarify the requirements for solar systems put into place in 2013.

No need to worry, but you can read about the technical details here (warning: extreme legalese ahead): Rules Relating to the Renewable Energy Technologies Income Tax Credit (RETITC)

How to apply for the HI Solar Tax Credit

Like most of the paperwork related to installing solar panels, we generally advise that you defer to your solar installer and tax accountant. Most of the time the solar company you’re working with can help you work out the details and sort things out. Most likely any good tax accountant in Hawaii will have some experience with these tax credits by now.

If you want to be proactive and learn more from the source, here is contact information for the Hawaii Department of Taxation:

Taxpayer Services Branch
P.O. Box 259
Honolulu, HI 96809
Phone: (808) 587-4242
E-Mail: Taxpayer.Services@hawaii.gov
Web: http://www.state.hi.us/tax

What other solar incentives are available in Hawaii?

We’ve compiled a bunch of these on our solar incentives page, so take a look at that for more information.

Additionally, we always recommend getting a solar evaluation for your home. This is the best way to add up all the numbers and get the opinion of an experience professional. With reference to tax credits and incentives, the best time to go solar is right now: both because incentives may change or drop, but also because your savings on electricity accumulate immediately and forever. In the same way that personal finance advisers tell you to invest early and often, we tell you to put up solar panels early and often.