Mount Alexander Shire has amongst the highest penetrations of solar power in Australia. Today 26% of our rooftops have solar panels on them, compared with only 10% in the whole of Australia. The bad news is that the peak was reached in 2011 when 764 solar systems were installed. That was the year local electricians quadrupled their workforces so that they could instal around 15 new systems per week. Since then, due to cutbacks in feed-in-tariffs, the industry has declined. In 2013, only 223 systems were installed.
Now, however, is a great time to go solar. The return on investment (ROI) is still very good at around 9%-16% (compared with the bank’s rate of around 3%) and the current review of the Renewable Energy Target is likely to result in an increase in solar system prices by up to 30% and a fall in the ROI.