The Feed-in Tariff
IMPORTANT - SYSTEMS WITH AN MCS CERTIFICATE ISSUED AFTER 31st MARCH 2019 CAN NO LONGER APPLY FOR TARIFFS, HOWEVER IF YOUR SYSTEM WAS INSTALLED BEFORE THEN YOU HAVE UNTIL THE 1st APRIL 2020 TO APPLY FOR THE SCHEME...
The Government launched the Feed-in Tariff on 1 April 2010; this consists of a payment for every unit of electricity that is generated by solar PV systems and an additional payment for exported electricity.
The Feed-in Tariff pays a tax free income to domestic households and an index-linked payment for both commercial and domestic installations. On top of this, solar PV generated electricity also produces substantial savings on your standard import / supply bill.
Who is eligible?
Short answer; everyone! All PV installations under 5MW, private and commercial are eligible. On the commercial side, the feed-in tariff will encourage PV installations among farmers, rural businesses, small and medium enterprises, where PV installations can be linked to other rural development programmes and enterprise grants.
Generation tariffs for new solar PV installations
The Feed-in Tariff is currently reviewed every 3 months, and depending on the current level of deployment the payments will change. For the most up-to-date tariffs please visit the Ofgem website here: Ofgem Feed-in Tariff
How long will it last?
Once a PV system is commissioned, the tariff applicable to that date is guaranteed for 20 years and will rise in subsequent years. The Feed-in Tariff is also indexed-linked to inflation which means, the FIT rate secured on commissioning date will increase on April 1st every year. Energy prices will continue to rise much faster than inflation (increasing return on investment) and a solar installation will also increase the value and saleability of your house.
The new "Metered Export" payment plans
As the feed-in tariff is now closed to new installations there are other alternatives to receiving an income from the surplus electricity that you may have from your solar system. Many energy companies are now launching schemes that will use a smart export meter to pay you for any energy that you export to the electricity grid. As things are still new and developing within the industry it is a little hard to determine which (if any) are the best options in relation to selling surplus to the grid. However it appears that there will likely be two main options; firstly having a "set rate" per kWh exported, and secondly having variable payments depending on the time of day and demand from the grid. If you know how much energy you are likely to be exporting and when this will be it will be beneficial in deciding on the best option for your particular circumstance. As more information is released we will update our page to reflect this.