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14 Nov 2011 07:11:47

Solar PV endures the feed-in tariff cuts but is still a sound investment

It was far from a "Happy Halloween" to all in the solar PV industry in Devon, Cornwall and Somerset (more like bonfire night comes early!) when the Government announced they would be cutting the feed-in tariff (the main financial incentive that makes a solar photovoltaic system such a financially attractive investment) from 12 December 2011.

It was inevitable the feed-in-tariff was going to be reduced and the original plan was for the reduction to take effect from 1 April 2012 but of course this has now been brought forward. It was essential that the feed-in-tariff was reduced as there have been significant reductions in the price of solar panels and their consumables over the last twelve months and there has been almost unprecedented solar PV market growth, especially here in Devon and the South West. Alongside this, the country as a whole has used almost four years' worth of feed-in-tariff allocation in just over 6 months! Byron McNeil-Matthews, MD at Ecosource Solutions commented "this just shows how well the feed-in-tariff works - it is doing exactly what the Government wanted, to attract people into the sustainable energy market".

What does this actually mean for you? Well, at the moment the current feed-in tariff rate is 43p per unit and from 12 December this will be lowered to 21p per unit. For all of Ecosource's existing customers who already have solar PV systems installed you willnotbe affected. Customers booked in to have a PV system installed prior to 12 December 2011 will alsonotbe affected and all of us at Ecosource Solutions will do our utmost to assist you and reassure you as best we can and to ensure your FIT application is sent off to the energy suppliers in plenty of time.

With all the negative press and media flying around you might think this is bad news but actually it is still a sound investment to purchase a solar PV system, especially here in Devon, Cornwall and Somerset where we get so much sunshine. The new FIT rate of 21p (guaranteed for 25 years as before) means that installing a solar panel system is still an excellent and viable option for most and you should still receive a return on your investment of approximateoly 5 to 10% on an annual basis. If you have an optimum south facing roof you should receive the higher percentage return. And don't forget, once the PV system has paid for itself you will continue to receive free electricity and feed-in-tariff payments on your existing rate for the remainder of the 25 years.

For further information on the feed-in tariffs (FITs) or if you are interested in having a solar photovoltaic system installed on your property in Exeter, Devon, Cornwall or Somerset, send us an enquiry for specialist and knowledgable solar PV advice.

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