Solar Opportunities- Washington

Solar Offerings and Incentives

All across Washington, it is possible to find a qualified contractor to install rooftop solar on homes and businesses. Depending on where you live, you may be eligible for a limited time offer of discounted purchase prices or may be able to purchase solar power without actually installing the equipment on your property.  These community or shared solar opportunities are listed below.  Of course, you can always install solar on your home by hiring a qualified solar installer, even if you don’t live in one of these program areas.  If so, don’t forget to claim the available state and federal tax incentives.

State and Local Incentives

Renewable Energy Sales and Use Tax Exemption

This program offers 100% sales tax and use exemption on solar water heat, solar space heat, and photovoltaic systems under 10 kilowatts. Other renewable systems are included as well, however they only receive a 75% exemption. More information and eligibility requirements can be found here.

Renewable Energy Cost Recovery Incentive Payment Program

This incentive program provides $0.15-$1.08/ kilowatt hour depending on the system that is installed. Some of the factors that can increase your incentive are having panels that are manufactured in Washington state, and/or having an inverter manufactured in Washington State. More information about the incentive and eligibility requirements can be found here.

Federal Residential Renewable Energy Tax Credit

A federal-level investment tax credit (ITC) is now available to consumers wanting to purchase small wind turbines, solar panels, or geothermal heat pumps.  The ITC, written into law through the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, is available for equipment installed from Oct. 3, 2008 through Dec. 31, 2016. The credit covers 30% of the equipment cost, though some technologies have a credit cap of $2000. More details and a complete list of eligible technologies can be found here.

Local projects

Phinney Ridge Community Solar Project

This solar program is a partnership between Seattle City light and the Woodland Park Zoo and the Phinney Neighborhood Association to install a 75 kilowatt system. Solar units, which are 28 watts, may be purchased for $150 each and each customer may purchase between 1-125 units.

Eligibility: Seattle City Light customers

More information can be found here.

Go Solar Washington

This community based bulk-purchase solar initiative aims to help residents and businesses overcome the logistical and financial challenges of going solar. The program also has workshops to help residents understand the process.

Eligibility: Snohomish and South Kitsap Residents

More information can be found here.

Solarize Washington

Solarize Washington offers bulk discount pricing, access to affordable financing, and streamlined installations for the residents of solarize towns. Solarize Washington makes going solar easy by allowing each town to competitively choose an installer. You can even get a free, no obligation site consultation to see if your residence qualifies. Check the list of towns below to see if your town is a solarize town.

Solarize Towns

For more Information

South County (Edmonds and Lynwood)

Mercer Island


Eligibility: Resident of Solarize Town

More information can be found here.

New Solarize programs may be offered in other towns in 2015.  If interested, check back in the spring for additional information.

Edmonds Community Solar Cooperative

This is a community solar cooperative where members pay $25 to become a member. A Sunslice costs $1000. The member who purchases the Sunslice receives the benefits of the power through the sale of the power to the City of Edmunds until 2020, but retains ownership of their piece of the system.

Eligibility: must be a resident of Washington

More information can be found here.

Ellensburg Community Renewable Park

In this program, the city of Ellensburg and its citizens partnered together to fund the purchase and installation of a solar system. Participants pay an upfront investment to co-own the system. The minimum share is $250 and members retain Renewable Energy Credits.\

Eligibility: Ellensburg Residents

 More information can be found here.  

The Harbor School- Vashon

Description: This program, spearheaded by Vashon Solar, LLC, seeks to put a 9 kilowatt solar array on the property of a local school. Residents and businesses may become members of the LLC and participate in funding the project. The investment will reap a return through the Washington State cost recovery program, which pays $1.08 for ever kilowatt hour produced by eligible systems.

Eligibility: Member of Vashon Solar, LLC

More information can be found here or Contact Gib Dammann at