1. The regulations to know
Before considering such a project, you must know whether or not it is possible to install solar panels in your home. Get closer to your town hall to find out the regulations of your municipality as well as the town planning code on which you depend. You can also ask for advice from the Departmental Directorate of Territories (DDT). In the case of new construction, the installation of solar panels must be mentioned on the building permit. If your home is an old building, you will need a work permit before you start.
Good to know: if you live within 500 meters of a historic building, your project may be refused.
2. Properly estimate your consumption
The sellers of photovoltaic panels are well established. And very often, they don't lack figures to promote their products. Even though solar panels have many advantages, the expected benefits can depend on multiple factors. What we want to tell you by this is that the figures correspond to general studies. This is why we advise you to carry out an energy audit according to your habitat, your region, your uses and the inclination of your roof. In this way, you will be able to estimate your real needs while limiting energy losses.
3. Different types of installation
Although it can be done without the help of professionals, installing solar panels is not so simple. And for good reason, it depends on the configuration of your accommodation. This is why we recommend that you call on specialists if you are not a handyman. In any case, be aware that solar panels are attached in different ways, namely:
- integration into the building: this is the most aesthetic solution and the one that requires the most work. It consists of integrating the panels directly on the roof. In other words, the solar panels replace the roof and must seal it.
- integration in superimposition: the photovoltaic panels are simply placed above the roof. The advantage with this type of installation is that it is achievable on most roofs whether flat or inclined.
- on the ground: if you wish, you can install your solar panels on the ground. But to do this, you should know that the regulations are not the same as in the previous cases. For example, the electricity produced can only be sold to EDF by a call for tenders. Which implies that if it is refused, you must consume all of the energy and be in self-consumption.
4. Funding and aid
Since the 2000s, the state has had the will to set up numerous subsidies to encourage the French to turn to solar energy. Among the aids relating to the installation of solar panels are:
- ECO-PTZ: the zero-rate eco-loan in 2019 makes it possible to finance eco-renovation works. The amount can go up to 30,000 euros in assistance and up to 10,000 euros maximum for condominium accommodation.
- The self-consumption bonus: nicknamed the energy premium, it aims to encourage self-consumption since May 2017. It relates to solar panels installed parallel to the roof, to models fixed on a flat roof or those fulfilling a lighter function , cladding, solar shading, railings, sun shade, pergolas or curtain wall. The aid varies can vary from 90 to 400 euros depending on the power of your installation.
- VAT on solar panels: only inhabited (and non-professional) housing can benefit from it. The amount varies from 10 to 20% depending on the size and power of your photovoltaic panels.
- Local aid: it all depends on where you live because local aid depends on local authorities. Ask your rights to your town hall or the Area Information Energy (EIA) of your region.
- ANAH: the National Housing Agency aims to combat fuel poverty. This is why it offers a resource ceiling for modest incomes wishing to carry out energy renovation works. Projects can sometimes be funded up to 90%!