Complete SGIP Guide to getting a Home Battery rebate in California

by Anna Gretz
September 1, 2017
Home Battery

California’s SGIP rebate for home batteries is one of the best incentive programs out there, but not everyone knows what it is, or how to use it.

Here is your complete guide to SGIP, California’s Self-Generation Incentive Program, and how you can use it to get a rebate on your home battery system.

What if we told you use SGIP rebate money to get a Tesla Powerwall 2? This is pretty good news, right? Tesla’s second generation of the Powerwall home battery is a game changer in the world of residential energy storage, and with California’s SGIP, you can get it almost completely paid for.

California’s SGIP really is one of the best motivators in the country for homeowners who are looking at installing a home battery to store the energy generated by their rooftop solar panels. California is full of solar-savvy residents, with more residential solar installations than any other state in the country. These energy-generating homes are starting to get storage-smart as well, looking to home batteries to store up the energy their solar panels are generating during the day, so they can use it when they need it the most (usually, that’s in the evenings after the sun goes down.) Fortunately, SGIP makes it easy and affordable for homeowners to install home batteries, thanks to the generous rebate offered by the program for energy storage.

In past years, residential customers in California had a hard time getting their piece of SGIP rebate cash, since many big corporations threw their hats in the ring for funding, leaving very little for smaller, home-based energy storage installations. A lot of organizations (Swell included) didn’t think that was fair, and went to bat for homeowners. It worked. This year, California’s SGIP got a makeover, making it easier than ever for homeowners to use the funding for home battery projects. In fact, PG&E, SCE, and SDG&E customers can see as high as a $400 per kilowatt-hour rebate for home batteries, covering the majority of the cost of the battery… including the Tesla Powerwall 2.

Since the second-generation Tesla Powerwall has a energy storage capacity of 13.5 kWh, it qualifies for $5,400 in total SGIP funding. You read that right: $5,400. The Powerwall battery equipment itself is priced at $5,500, so the incentive covers nearly all of the cost of the battery. See, we told you it was good news. There are some additional costs involved in Powerwall installation, including the shipping, taxes, and the cost of installation itself, but the Tesla Powerwall is also eligible for the Federal ITC, another investment tax credit for energy storage purchases. The ITC can knock off another 30% off the bill, and make your home battery purchase even more of a no-brainer.

[Yes, we know that navigating the world of rebates and tax credits can be a little complicated. That’ one reason why we’re here--to help apply for funding for you, making sure you get all the incentives you can. You can thank us later.]

Now that you know the basics of what SGIP is and how California’s can use these rebates to hook themselves up with an awesome residential energy system, let’s check out what, exactly, upgrading your home’s power source can look like.

Households equipped with solar panels and energy storage in the form of home batteries will be completely protected from any utility company mishap, whether it be on a large or small scale. Home batteries allow households to power their own essential appliances like refrigerators, water pumps, and heating/cooling devices with stored electricity collected from renewable energy sources like solar panels. The grid may be vulnerable, but the sun? Not so much.

Solar + storage means resilience, and resilience means toughness; the ability to recover quickly after taking a hit. When it comes to energy, resilience means the capacity of a power source to sustain a disaster, on a large or small scale. Resilience means that you are protected from the unexpected blackouts that result from the increasingly unruly weather. It means you don’t have to worry about losing heat when it’s freezing, or air conditioning when the heat is unbearable. Resilient power is essential and life-sustaining, and key for preparing new homes and businesses for what the future has in store.

The image of solar power (and solar power owners) has quickly formed into the picture of forward-thinking sophistication. New solar panels are sleek, stylish, and low-profile. Home batteries are striking, chic conversation pieces without the noise generators are known for. Solar and storage are now selling points on modern homes; impressive, attractive, and a sign of embracing the modern way to energize.

Solar power and energy storage are no longer “the future.” They’re the present.

Solar power and energy storage are quickly becoming mainstream, due to the lowered cost and clear-cut value. What used to be a luxury reserved for the upper-class is now a completely accessible household device.

Equipping your home with solar panels and a home battery means supercharging it to a new level, and SGIP can give you a major boost.

Swell Energy is in the business of helping Californians tap into all of the rebates available, so energy independence can be accessible to everyone. Hit us up if you want to begin the conversation about how you can turn your home into the ultimate energy fortress.