knowledge article

Our guide to the lifetime value of going solar 


Solar power is becoming increasingly popular in New Zealand, as more and more households and businesses embrace the benefits of switching to solar

Kiwis are choosing to install home solar energy systems to reduce their carbon footprints and gain energy independence, and of course, because of the long-term financial wins! 

Given that the cost of solar panels has decreased by more than 80% in the past 20 years, it has never been more affordable to go solar. If you’re considering solar for your home, it’s important to understand the ‘lifetime value’ of your investment. 

Here, we explore how a home solar system will benefit you financially, and how long the ‘solar payback period’ is in 2023.

Understanding ‘lifetime value’ for home solar

We use ‘lifetime value’ or ‘return on investment (ROI)’ to refer to the net financial impact of your home solar system; the amount of money you invest in your home solar system versus your long-term savings on power/utility bills across the entire lifespan of the system, from purchase and installation to end-of-life. 

We use industry-leading Qcells solar panels, which come with a robust, credible 25 year build and performance warranty, essentially ensuring a 25-year panel lifespan for Harrisons customers.

Qcells solar panel

The ‘payback period’

Once you have made the initial investment in your home solar system, it takes a few years of ‘free’ power generation from your solar panels to break even on what you would have paid in grid-sourced power bills. Solar installations have become progressively cheaper, because solar panel technology has become more powerful. The cost of installing a system that matches your home’s current energy needs is now equivalent to 7-9 years of electricity bills. After this, you’ll essentially be only using ‘free’ power.

Here’s an example of the net financial impact of a Harrisons Solar installation on a Kiwi home.*

New Zealand household energy bills have steadily increased by 3% per year in recent years, and are set to double by 2028, whereas the price of a solar energy system will likely decrease. So, the average payback period will only continue to shorten over the coming years!

Use our Solar Savings Calculator 

Other ‘lifetime value’ factors for home solar

Get paid for your surplus power

If your household generates more solar energy than you consume, you can export the excess power back to the grid. Harrisons Solar customers also have the added benefit of exclusive access to the highest buy-back rate of 18c per unit, so your solar investment goes further with us.

Mercury buy back deal

Increased property value 

Solar panels not only provide savings and environmental benefits but can also increase the value of your property. Homes with solar panel installations are more attractive to potential buyers due to their lower energy costs and environmental appeal. So, you can recoup much of your initial investment when you sell your property. We teamed up with to analyse thousands of homes installed with Harrisons Solar. On average, Harrisons Solar increased the home's selling price by 4.4% or $35K.

Will I have to pay for expensive replacements or maintenance long-term?

Solar panels require minimal maintenance, and quality solar equipment is built to last in even harsh weather conditions. This means that, over the long term, you can enjoy a steady stream of energy without significant ongoing expenses. A well-maintained solar system can operate efficiently for decades, enhancing the lifetime value of your investment. Here are some tips on getting the most out of your solar panels

Batteries can maximise the value of your home solar system

Solar batteries offer an efficient way to store surplus energy produced during peak sunlight hours, effectively making your solar system a 24/7 energy source, and ensuring no drop of sunlight is wasted! Clever use of your solar battery may significantly decrease your payback period. Here’s more on how batteries are making solar more affordable than ever.

Tesla Powerwall battery

Now is the time to maximise your solar savings - take advantage of our Hot Solar Deals!

On top of our usual price promise, we’re offering more opportunities to save on solar in November.

See our specials page for all details and T&Cs. 

Contact the Harrisons team today for a free, no-obligation, in-home consultation; learn about our interest-free payment options and other easy finance plans; and take the first step in slashing your power bill and saving the planet!

*This is an example only generated from "OpenSolar" software using a low energy user, not to be relied upon as individual circumstances vary.

Your projected energy cost is calculated by considering a 3.0% increase in energy cost each year, due to trends in the raising cost of energy. This estimate is based on your selected preferences, current energy costs and the position and orientation of your roof to calculate the efficiency of the system. Projections are based on estimated usage of 7920 kWh per year, assuming AKL - Contact Energy Standard User Electricity Tariff. Your electricity tariff rates may change as a result of installing the system. You should contact your electricity retailer for further information.System Performance Assumptions: System Total losses: 13.9%, Inverter losses: 3.2%, Optimizer losses: 0%, Shading losses: 0%, Performance Adjustment: 0%, Output Calculator: System Advisor Model 2020.02.29.r2. Panel Orientations: 8 panels with Azimuth 7 and Slope 20.Estimates do not include replacement costs of equipment not covered by a warranty. Components may need replacement after their warranty period. Financial discount rate assumed: 6.75%Price excludes Retailer Smart Meter should you want us to install your Smart Meter it will be an additional cost.Please visit for additional disclosures from OpenSolar.Estimated solar generation is calculated by multiplying the number of estimated panels, the wattage of each panel, and the average number of sunshine hours per day. This calculation is based on a $0.30 per kWh electricity rate and is projected over a period of one year and twenty five years.

Decorative Curve

Book a Free Quote Today

Book a FREE on-site measure and quote at a time that suits you, and we can also give you a proposal on the spot.

Harrisons  on-site measure to a customer

Book an Appointment Today!

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse varius enim in eros elementum tristique. Duis cursus, mi quis viverra ornare, eros dolor interdum nulla, ut.

Get your Beginners
Guide to Solar

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Download your Beginners Guide to Solar here
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Download our guide to learn:
How to make the right choice for your home
How solar technology has advanced and what it can do for you?
How solar effects your home’s value?
How to get started?
And more!

How we have helped our customers

Hear from some of our customers on how solar has slashed their power bill.