Solar PV Price Index: What does solar cost in your state?

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Solar Choice has been tracking residential solar price trends in Australia’s capital cities for 4 years. Here’s what they found.

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Since 2012, Solar Choice has been tracking residential solar PV system installation price trends in Australia’s capital cities (with the exception of Darwin). The data that we publish has been referenced by a wide range of organisations both inside and outside Australia – from government bodies, not-for-profits and academics to financial services companies and – of course – residential solar PV system shoppers and installers. We are excited to be sharing our insights with RenewEconomy readers from this month onwards.

The below figures are based on quoted prices from our network of 100+ installers across Australia, who have been selected for their reputation as quality operators with favourable customer reviews. All prices in the tables below are after the STC incentive has been applied and inclusive of GST; they represent the total retail cost of having the system installed.

We are currently mining our database, and expect to also be publishing a Battery Storage Price Index for the Australian market in the near future.

Average quoted price by city and system size

Residential-solar-system-prices-average-April-2016

Median dollar-per-watt solar system prices

Median-solar-system-prices-per-watt-April-2016

Historic price trends by system size (since January 2016)

Historic-1-5kW-system-prices-April-2016     Historic-2kW-solar-system-prices-April-2016Historic-3kW-solar-system-prices-April-2016Historic-4kW-solar-system-prices-April-2016Historic-5kW-solar-system-prices-April-2016Historic-10kW-solar-system-prices-April-2016

Historic price trends: All system sizes (since January 2016)

Historic-price-per-wall-all-system-sizes-April-2016

About Solar Choice

Solar Choice is a brokerage and comparison service for solar PV systems servicing the whole of Australia. Since 2008, we have assisted over 95,000 Australian households and thousands of businesses make an informed choice about going solar. We also develop large-scale solar farms, and have been offering Battery Storage Quote Comparisons since August 2015.

About this data

Tables and charts included in this article were compiled using data from Solar Choice’s installer network database, which contains regularly-updated pricing and product details from over 100 accredited solar installation companies across Australia. All prices that appear are net of the federal STC incentive and inclusive of GST. In most instances, prices do not incorporate meter change fees, and exclude travel costs or additional charges for special circumstances (e.g. slate roof or 2-story+ building). Installers’ premium and microinverter/power optimiser offerings are not included in our calculations.

A more in-depth version of this month’s index is available here on the Solar Choice website. Solar Choice also publishes monthly insights about commercial solar PV system prices (10kW-100kW), the most recent of which can be found here.

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10 Comments
  1. joono 3 years ago

    Did you know there is another capital city in Australia? It is called Darwin. It is the capital of the Northern Territory, an Australian Territory on the mainland of continental Australia. Last time I checked Darwin gets excellent amounts of sunshine, and yes, people install solar systems here too.

    • Charles 3 years ago

      Also, Tasmania isn’t a city!

      • james2martin 3 years ago

        Thanks, Charles. This is clearly a point that we’re aware of, but I guess it does bear some explaining! Some time ago we started including all of Tasmania for our Hobart numbers given the relatively small geographical area that the state covers – but really the prices apply mainly to Hobart. Will update this from next month.

    • james2martin 3 years ago

      Hi joono. Historically we haven’t had a strong enough installer presence to publish meaningful data for Darwin, but having another look at our database I see that we now do. Keep an eye out for Darwin in next month’s Index.

      • Andrew Woodroffe 3 years ago

        A couple of unique factors about Darwin;1. the local utility pays 1 for 1 for spill and 2. on account of certain cyclone, Tracy, a few decades ago now, all installs need civil engineering certification, $!!

  2. Jo 3 years ago

    I think we need to take the data from ‘Solar Choice’ with a grain of salt. The name of the organisation is easily confused with the consumer organisation ‘Choice’. Or it sounds like a solar sister organisation of ‘Choice’.

    But is far from that. ‘Solar Choice’ is a sales organisation which benefits from the leads they generate. As such ‘Solar Choice’ has an interest to see relative high prices. You can find solar installations for much lower cost in the market than what Solar Choice is reporting.

    • james2martin 3 years ago

      Hi Jo.

      While our data of course doesn’t encompass the entirety of the Australian market, it does represent a sample of what is on offer here.

      The tables above contain median prices from installers in our network but do not include the highs and lows. Their purpose is to act as a bellwether for industry trends rather than than show the absolute lowest prices in each capital city.

      You are absolutely right that there are cheaper systems out there. There are also more expensive systems out there, and solar shoppers should know the difference before making a decision. The purpose of our publishing this data is to help them to work out the difference; if a price is dramatically higher or lower than the figures we’ve put out, they might want to ask why. In this respect, it’s a useful reference – and hopefully worth at least a few grains of salt.

      As for our name, we’ve been around since 2008 and imagine that at this point shoppers are savvy enough to know that we are in no way associated with Choice (which is in its own right a great resource).

  3. Bob_Wallace 3 years ago

    What’s up with Perth?

  4. neroden 3 years ago

    Why are our solar install prices in the US SO MUCH HIGHER than yours in Australia?

    At the *worst* of these prices, I’d be installing rooftop solar tomorrow.

    Can you bring your installers’ expertise in reducing costs oveer to the US? Somehow?

    • Bob_Wallace 3 years ago

      Market forces.

      Grid prices were so high (and feed in tariffs so high in Germany) that they created a large amount of potential savings (or income in Germany) and that created very robust demand.

      Lots of activity. Economy of scale kicks in. Supply streams become very efficient. Competition drives down prices. High demand means no or little spending on customer acquisition (advertising and door to door sales).

      US subsidies are set up in a manner that means people who install solar may see no drop in monthly bills for several years if they finance the system.

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