Victorian businesses saving big with solar installations

Solar roof panels (rooftop australia new)
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Victorian small, medium and family businesses are saving on average more than $2,000 per year from their energy bills by installing solar power systems, according to Solar Victoria.

The Solar for Business Program, which commenced in 2021 is designed to support Victorian businesses, including Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and Small to Medium Family Businesses (SMFBs) in reducing their energy costs by accessing the benefits of renewable energy. 

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A recent review of Solar Victoria’s Solar for Business program by the Centre for New and Emerging Technologies (C4NET) found that over 2,290 businesses ranging from cafes to auto repair shops, dentists and doctors are enjoying the savings. 

The Greater Dandenong, Kingston and Hume local government areas the top three metropolitan LGAs, and Greater Bendigo, Greater Geelong and Ballarat the top regional areas where eligible businesses have taken advantage of available rebates to cut the cost of installing a solar panel system. As well businesses in the Mildura, Warrnambool and northeast Victorian region have accessed rebates. 

The rebates cover up to 50% of the cost of a rooftop solar system with businesses eligible for a maximum rebate of $3,500 to reduce the upfront cost. As well businesses can access an interest free loan of up to $5,000 to assist with their installation, in essence, getting a financial boost to save on power bills. 

Cheaper Buy Miles provides discounted food and supermarket goods at three locations in Melbourne’s western suburbs, and its latest Footscray shop has solar PV installed using a Solar for Business rebate. Owner Grant Miles said the cost of the installation was around $10,500, after receiving the Solar Victoria rebate.

With the shop using most electricity during the day, when the panels are generating at the highest level, he estimates that the energy saving it provides means the installation will have paid for itself in around two and a half years.

Businesses applying for rebates may also be eligible to access tax benefits such as the Instant Asset write-off incentive provided by the federal government. The recently announced $314m Federal Small Business Energy Incentive will further business savings post 1 July. 

The incentive will allow businesses with up to $50m in turnover a 20 per cent tax deduction on solar panels, batteries and other energy efficient electrical devices when they invest up to $100,000 on reducing their reliance on fossil fuel energy.

You can find more information about Solar Victoria’s business rebate at: Solar for Business Program | Solar Victoria.

Solar Victoria CEO Stan Krpan said, “Solar Victoria’s rebates mean you are getting money to cut costs for your business. It is a win-win situation.

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“Businesses use most of their power during the day, when the solar system is working its hardest, meanings the energy savings can be significant.

“The Solar for Business rebates and interest free loans, combined with the benefits of an Instant Asset write-off, are a strong support and incentive for small businesses to adopt solar energy.” 

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