FPL helps residents harness sun's energy

ROYAL PALM BEACH, Fla. - There is a reason why it is called the Sunshine State. We get plenty of sun year-round, especially in South Florida. And once again, Florida Power & Light Company customers can harness the sun's energy and save money in the process.

Jathynia Garcia is taking advantage of FPL's solar rebate program. She had solar panels installed in her Royal Palm Beach home.

"It's a good incentive that people think that OK, let me negotiate the deal and then by the way, I have this rebate. then in the long term you see, OK it makes sense and this is how many years it's going to take to pay this investment off," Garcia said. 

The solar rebate program may help homeowners recoup their investment sooner. 

"The average home with four folks living in it, they are going to cut their utility costs by $200 a month, so this system is going to pay for itself in 3 to 5 years," said President of Abundant Energy Bill Hoysradt Jr.

A typical solar energy system may run $25,000. With the FPL rebate, knock 10 grand off that, then the federal government gives you a $7500 tax credit, leaving you with a much cheaper bill, Hoysradt Jr. said.

Add financing and you could be spending less per month paying off the equipment, than you pay on your power bill. That is why this program is so popular.

"Within 15 minutes there are enough folks desiring to use solar photovoltaic on their home that they use up the entire amount that FPL funds the program with," said Hoysradt Jr.

According to FPL's website, the solar rebate programs are part of a five-year pilot program authorized by the Florida Public Service Commission to promote clean solar power and reduce energy consumption.

The Garcia's were one of the lucky ones to get the rebate before they ran out, and are thrilled at the upcoming savings.

"It accumulates to thousands of dollars at the end of the day," said Garcia.

Now, if you are interested in the solar rebate from FPL, the first thing you have to do is contact a qualified solar contractor. Go to wptv.com and click on the "Seen on 5" section for a list of local contractors.

But you better act quick, the 2012 rebate program opens October 16th.

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