Legislation in New Mexico supports clean energy and is continuously working to increase the number of homes and businesses with solar energy systems. Because of this, New Mexico has several laws in place to protect the rights of citizens to own and operate solar panels. These include restrictions on HOA bans, off-grid regulations, and more.
In this blog, we’ll look at these laws and answer the following questions:
- Are there any specific laws for Solar Panels in New Mexico?
- What are the solar rights in New Mexico?
- Who regulates solar companies in New Mexico?
- Is solar worth it in New Mexico?
- Do I need permission for an off-grid solar system in New Mexico?
Are There Any Specific Laws for Solar Panels in New Mexico?
New Mexico’s solar industry laws give homeowners the right to install solar power systems on their property. HOAs cannot ban solar panels, but specific requirements may exist in your area that limit the design or placement of your system. The HOA of your neighborhood must supply any restrictions or rules to you so you’re aware before installation.
For rentals or multi-family homes, solar panels must be approved by the landlord or rental management company. That said, as of April 2021, the Community Solar Act (SB84) was implemented, creating statewide community solar programs. These programs benefit residential, nonprofit, and commercial properties that may need access to energy from solar installation.
What are the Solar Rights in New Mexico?
The Solar Rights Act recognizes the importance of clean energy and encourages the construction and use of solar devices. The legislature’s primary purpose is to prohibit New Mexico cities from forbidding solar installation, except for historic districts. Likewise, The Renewable Energy Property Tax Exemption exempts residential solar power systems from property taxes.
Who Regulates Solar Companies in New Mexico?
The Public Regulation Commission regulates solar in New Mexico. According to the Renewable Energy Act, they review and approve all renewable energy procurement plans and reports of Investor Owned Utilities and Rural Electric Cooperatives. The Utility Division serves as staff to the Commission in regulating renewable energy resources, among other forms of energy production.
Is Solar Worth it in New Mexico?
Yes! Like many Southwestern states, New Mexico offers adequate sunlight year-round. With plenty of sunshine for solar power systems to soak up and convert to energy, there are also plenty of incentives at the federal and state levels to offset costs and provide added benefits.
Solar energy is an excellent investment in the Land of Enchantment. However, before you take the next step, consider whether your home’s location, energy needs, and design are a good fit and will offer a return on investment that outweighs initial installation costs.
Do I Need Permission for an Off-Grid Solar System in New Mexico?
New Mexico does require specific steps to install an off-grid solar system, but the process is designed to be easy and accessible. To live off-grid, you must obtain the proper permits and approvals. You’ll need to prove that you are living responsibly and safely with your off-grid system through compliance with state and local regulations.
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To break these down, New Mexico holds the following solar power laws and rights:
- No HOA bans on solar installations
- Approved HOA restrictions
- Property tax exemptions on residential solar
- Access to statewide community solar programs
- Access to solar power incentives
At the federal and state levels, solar energy is highly encouraged, and we continue to increase incentives and solar-friendly programs as a country to convert more and more communities and businesses to clean energy.
To learn more about solar power and how you can become a part of the clean energy efforts, please contact us today.