There are solar panels and then there are solar panels. To be more specific, there are commercial solar panel kits and then there are do-it-yourself or DIY solar panel kits. Many people are considering placing one or more alternative sources of home energy to: bring down the cost of their utility bills; or to gain extra income by selling non-consumed energy back to the electrical company (with rebate to boot); or to simply make that green choice of choosing non-fossil fuel based energy. Whatever your personal reason may be, solar power for your home is always a great option since this form of energy can now be harnessed almost anywhere. Unlike wind power and hydro power, where the environment of your home’s locale plays an important role, solar power simply needs a good area where you can harvest the sun’s energy.

If you are indeed thinking about going green but are worried about the possible cost of solar panels, here are some things you ought to consider:

1. The cost of solar panels that are commercially produced can be as much as a whooping $20,000+++. Although there are less expensive factory-made kits for home use, (from $5,000 and upwards) these can still become prohibitively expensive. Some homeowners may be tasked with getting 2nd and 3rd mortgages out of their home before they actually see their investment paying off. On the other hand, the cost of solar panels offered by DIY service providers can cost you a mere $600 (given more or less, depending on a lot of factors.) This is still not inclusive of shipping and delivery costs. However, it is quite evident which one (between the commercial product and the DIY product) is really more affordable.

2. You also have to take into consideration the installation cost of solar panels. All solar power kits (obviously enough) have to be installed in your home before they can be serviceable so that the alternative energy can be hooked up with the existing energy lines. For commercial solar power kits, you need to hire a contractor for the job or a direct professional company who install solar power kits. Depending on your agreement, the type of solar panels you want installed and what energy line should the panels be attached to – you could be facing another several thousand dollars in bills. If you compare that to the cost of solar panels that you personally install with your DIY kits, you do have to agree that you probably won’t be billing yourself for a weekend (or two) installing it.

3. There are now several states and electrical companies who offer rebate programs to homeowners who do install solar panel kits. Depending on state laws, some rebates for the cost of solar panels can amount to $200 per home. That is not particularly bad. In other cases, you may even be offered a chance to sell back unconsumed energy to the electrical company as a source of a regular monthly income – which is another way of earning from your solar energy investment. However, try to do the math here. Which one will prove better: a $20,000+++ investment or a $600+++ investment with the same rebate bonus and the potential to earn from unconsumed energy?