• Did you know that San Diego has some of the highest electricity prices in the USA? It’s probably not surprising for most people in our county. Prices are forecasted to increase because SDG&E has projected rate increases over the coming years. 

    On top of this, SDG&E put out requests for a temporary rate adjustment increase due to the price of electricity being higher than expected last summer in 2020. It doesn’t help that this year our region is facing record heat over the course of July, August, September, and October. 

    Currently, the average residential rate with SDG&E has increased from 27 cents per kilowatt hour to 31 cents per kWh. 

    According to SDG&E:

    These changes in pricing help cover the cost of infrastructure and reliability improvements, fire hardening, operational expenses, climate action, customer assistance programs and energy procurements so we can deliver our customers clean, safe and reliable energy.”

    In response to rate hikes across the state of California - California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) President Marybel Batjer noted: “Rates rising far faster than inflation are straining the budgets of vulnerable customers.

  • SDG&E stated that they require rate hikes to make up for losses during a hot 2020 and a projected increase in temperatures in the latter half of 2021. 

    Interestingly, SDG&E is a private, for-profit company that is owned by a Fortune 500 company, Sempra Energy. Thus, SDG&E must meet expenses and also provide dividends to their shareholders. As liabilities continue to rise with increased fire risk and heat in San Diego, SDG&E pass additional costs to customers to stay profitable. This is unlike most California municipal utilities who still operate at non-profit government entities. 

    Use Solar to Forgo Rate Increases

    It’s an unfortunate truth: electricity prices are only rising in San Diego County. Everything from environmental factors to human factors play a part in this. There’s only one way to take control of your financial future when it comes to the utilities: solar power in San Diego.

    If you install a solar energy system on your roof or property, you can be the master of your electric destiny. You can utilize SDG&E for grid connection while no longer relying on their exceedingly expensive rates.

    Utilize the Federal Tax Credit

    It’s a great time to go solar. And not just because of rate increases! Homeowners in San Diego can still take advantage of the 26% Federal Solar Tax Credit. This is an income tax credit for 26% of the cost of your solar project, as long as you purchase directly without a lease. As an example, if your system costs $25,000, you would receive an income Tax Credit of $6,500.

    This is huge for people who want to lower their tax obligation. What makes this even sweeter is that there is no cap to the tax credit. In theory you could set yourself up with a Tax Credit of $15,000 or even more if you’re so inclined. 

    Another thing to keep in mind is that the Tax Credit can be rolled into next year if you don’t use up your whole credit. For instance if you have a $10,000 tax credit and only owe $8,000 in taxes - you can roll over $2,000 for next year.

    The Federal Solar Tax Credit is currently being extended through 2022. As a result, if you want to go solar, now is the time for action based on the financial ROI. 

    Power in Your Own Hands

    San Diego only has one utility which has a monopoly on electricity in the county. Going solar is a brilliant free-market choice to reject from the inevitable rate increases that SDG&E is forecasted to implement. 

    There are many compound benefits of going solar especially if you choose to implement an electric vehicle and battery into the mix. 

    Your deal can be made even better if you need an EV Charger installed on top of this. It’s the perfect match: your electric vehicles can run off electricity exclusively from your house if you choose. That means you can use extra electricity to power your car. It’s not a bad deal: using one solar system to eliminate your electric bill, power your EV car, and save money on your tax bill. Imagine a world without paying for gasoline ever again. It's an amazing concept - powering your home and your car with sunshine. Some people might call that sunshine savings.

    Everything might sound great - but it’s sometimes daunting to know where to start. SDG&E and their various rate structures can be complicated. That’s why we recommend reaching out to a local company who has been in the business for a long time. 

    That’s why our Energy Consultants will guide you towards the best scenario. All you need is to fill in your details on our contact page and they can walk you through the potential of getting solar in San Diego

    Remember: the Federal Tax Credit will significantly drop before we know it. We can’t know if there will be favorable rates in the future. It’s a good idea to lock in a great deal and take advantage of the Tax Credit while it’s at the most generous rate available. 

    There’s never been a better time to secure your energy future. As we can see from the SDG&E forecasts, we’re in for rising electricity rates. They won’t get cheaper. Going solar is simply the only way to fight back and take control of your bills. It’s a great move for anyone who wants to make a shrewd financial move while switching to a clean renewable energy source. 

    Feel free to drop us a line. It’s a no-obligation process. We want to educate people on the benefits of going solar. Reach out to chat with a Stellar Solar Energy Consultant today. It’s fast and easy to set up a virtual solar consultation. We’re happy to help.

  • About the Author

    Michael Powers


    Michael is one of the founding partners of Stellar Solar. In 2001, he helped launch The Home Depot’s national solar energy program which is now offering home solar through hundreds of stores in nearly a dozen states. He is a writer and marketing professional with over 30 years’ experience in the fields of energy, market intelligence and leadership training. He currently serves as treasurer and board member of Global Energy Network Institute (GENI), a San Diego-based non-governmental organization that advocates linking renewable energy resources around the world using electricity transmission.