Solar Panels in Reading, VT: Solar Companies, Cost, and Installation

DecisionData Team
February 21, 2017

We're here to help you determine whether a solar power system is worth it in Reading, Vermont. We'll also answer your questions about how it works and which solar providers and installers are available. See the topics below:

Cost of Solar Panels in Reading, VT

The figures below show the total cost of solar power in Reading and the estimated payback or break-even period. The numbers below assumes you want to buy the system outright. You can also get a loan, lease the system, or set up a “power purchase agreement” (PPA). Learn more about payment options.

Residential 5 kW system

Estimated system cost: $20,950

(-) Federal tax credit: 30% with no maximum

Final cost after tax credits: $14,665

Est. energy savings per year: $1,230

Time to recover costs: 11 years 11 months

30-year savings: $22,235

Commercial 50 kW system

Estimated system cost: $193,500

(-) Federal tax credit: 30% with no maximum

Final cost after tax credits: $135,450

Est. energy savings per year: $12,298

Time to recover costs: 11 years 0 months

30-year savings: $233,487

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State discounts are not calculated due to complex pricing, frequent change, and individual variations such as the property taxes on your home or business. Overall, financial incentives in most of Vermont are decent, so expect to pay less vs. the above. All partner solar power companies will help you determine which incentives you qualify for. You may either request a quote by clicking above or try checking for state solar incentives on's site here.

Solar Power Companies in Reading, VT

The following companies do solar power installation and financing in Vermont.

SolarCity Logo

  Description: SolarCity is currently the largest solar provider in the nation. The company was started by two brothers, and is proud of its grassroots beginnings. Features:
  • $0 down plans available.
  • The Give Power foundation gives a solar system and battery to schools without electricity for every megawatt generated.
  • Option to lock-in power rates to avoid rising utility costs.
Company highlights: SolarCity is easy to get behind with its emphasis on helping less fortunate communities. Customers also report high satisfaction with price lock options.

Sungevity logo

Description: Sungevity does business in 14 states, but they'd best be classified as an enthusiastic underdog. They've shown some differentiation through technology and power generation monitoring. Features:
  • 20-year system performance guarantee
  • Partnerships to share profits with environmental non-profits
  • Representatives on-hand at your local Lowe's
Company highlights: There's nothing wrong with Sungevity - they're a great providers with high-quality systems and technology. They could do a little better by providing more pricing options and some of the risk-reducing guarantees that other companies offer.

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While you can install your own solar panels, it's definitely not easy. We strongly recommend working with a professional solar power installer. If you have professional construction and roofing experience feel free to read more about DIY systems.

Should You Get Solar in Reading?

Obviously only you can decide, but we've collected the following pros and cons for getting solar at a Reading home or business:


  • 30% federal incentive extended to 2019
  • High grid electricity costs ($0.17 per kilowatt-hour) make solar payback times shorter
  • Rising electricity costs (+6% in the last 5 years)
  • Decent state financial incentives (#17 out of 50)
  • Excellent policy scores: interconnection (B) | net metering (A)


  • Below-average electrity usage (558 kWh per month) means fewer opportunities for savings
  • Moderate sunshine (8.6% below average)

Is solar worth it in Reading, VT? Considering all of the above, we think so for most people. Solar is 19.4% more cost effective than the rest of the nation and will pay itself back in around 11 years 11 months for a home buyer. We like to see return times (without state incentives) under 20 years.


  • Electricity costs, rates of change, and usage from
  • Subsidies analyzed by DecisionData from state websites
  • State policy scores come from
  • Sun data assumes equal zip code weight based on NREL data

Solar Power Savings by Month in Reading

A 5kW system will save someone in Reading up to $102.27 on an average month. That's significant given the average Vermont power bill of $95.33 per month. Here’s a monthly breakdown:

MonthAvailable kW / m2 / dayMax savings / month

Data based on 1 zip in Reading, VT. Data reliability is rated excellent.

Savings Methodology

We estimate savings with a system that is very efficient at 19% of energy captured with a standard 5% total system loss. System loss comes from both the unavoidable (system age, electrical dissipation in wiring and connections, etc.) and the avoidable (shade from trees, dust, etc.) Do note that the system will b e slightly less efficient as it ages, too.

For example, July is the highest-sun month in Reading with an average of 5.24 kW per meter per day. An efficient 5 kW system will cover about 25 square meters depending on the roof. So, the following is the savings calculation for July in Reading:

5.24 kW/m2 * 25m2 = 131.03 kW/day available

131.03 * 19% efficiency = 24.90 kW/day captured

24.90 kW * 95% system retention = 23.65 kW/day usable

23.65 kW * Vermont average of $0.17 per kW * 30 days = up to $124.64 in savings in an average July.

These assumptions are very good for the average home in Reading, but nothing beats the accuracy of getting your own quote.

Other Resources

Solar panel costs and savings: More info on how much solar costs and the factors that can influence your price.

Kilowatts and kilowatt hours: What are kilowatts and how do electric companies charge you?

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