The Real Cost of Home Solar Systems in South Africa

28 Feb 2023

Here's our comprehensive guide on the costs of home solar systems in South Africa.

Key takeaways: Cost of home solar system in SA

  • Size dependant
  • Type of system will influence cost, do you need to generate energy or store power from the grid for loadshedding
    • 3kW systems start around R2000.00
    • 5kW systems start around R3000/month
    • 8kW systems start at R4500/month
    • 12kW systems start at R5800/month
  • Brand and features


Solar power is a great choice for South African homeowners who are increasingly looking for alternate energy sources. Yet, the price of installing a solar power system often discourages many people. In this article, we’ll explore the costs associated with installing a solar energy system in your home so you can determine if it’s the best option for you.

Factors that influence the Cost of a Home Solar Systems

The price of a solar system for your house depends on a number of factors. Such as:

Size of the System

The size of your solar system is a crucial factor that determines the amount of energy it can produce. Typically, South African households require solar systems with an inverter capacity in the range of 3kW to 12kW, depending on their energy consumption needs.

To determine the size of the solar system you need, it’s essential to calculate your household’s average energy consumption. This calculation considers factors such as the number of people in your household, the types of appliances you use, your overall lifestyle and your average monthly expenditure on electricity.

The more energy your household consumes, the larger the solar system you will need to produce enough power to meet your needs. A larger system will cost more upfront, but it will also produce more energy, which means you’ll see greater savings on your energy bills over time.

It’s crucial to work with a qualified solar installer who can help you determine the optimal size for your solar system based on your household’s specific energy needs. With the right size solar system, you can enjoy the benefits of clean energy while reducing your carbon footprint and saving money on your energy bills.

Types of Home Solar Power Systems

When it comes to solar systems, there are three primary types: grid-tied, hybrid, and off-grid.

Grid-Tied Solar System

The most prevalent kind of solar system is a grid-tied one. It is intended to operate in concert with the electrical grid. Homeowners that wish to lower their energy costs and participate in net metering programs should use these technologies.

As a grid-tied solar system is connected to the power grid, any extra energy it produces may be sent back into the grid. When the system is not producing energy, this extra energy can be used to offset energy bills because it is credited to the homeowner’s account.

Hybrid Solar System

A battery backup system and the electrical grid can both be used with a hybrid solar system. For households that desire backup power in case of an outage or load shedding, this kind of system is perfect.

With a battery backup system, a hybrid solar system allows for the storage of extra energy generated by the solar panels. When the system is not producing energy, at night or in cloudy conditions, this energy can be utilised. Any extra energy generated by the solar panels can be sent back into the power grid if the battery backup system is completely charged.

Solar Off-Grid System

Off-grid solar systems are not linked to the electrical grid and are made to be entirely self-sufficient. For people who reside in distant places or who wish to be totally independent of the electrical grid, this sort of system is appropriate.

Solar panels, a battery backup system, and a backup generator make comprise an off-grid solar system. The battery backup system stores the energy that the solar panels harvest from the sun. When the battery backup system is completely charged and the solar panels are not providing enough energy to fulfil the demands of the home, the backup generator is employed to supply electricity.

It’s crucial to think about your energy requirements, financial situation, and geography before selecting a solar system. Working with a certified solar contractor will help you choose the ideal solar system for your house and begin reaping the rewards of clean, renewable energy.

solar panel exploded view

Type of Solar Panels

There are several types of photovoltaic (PV) solar panels to choose from, each with its unique features and cost implications. For instance, monocrystalline solar panels are more expensive than polycrystalline panels, but they usually have a higher efficiency rating, and generate more energy. both will save you money on electricity. The choice comes down to your personal preference, space constraints, and the best financing option for you.

Location and Installation

The cost of installing a solar system also depends on where you live, the type of roof and the complexity of the installation. Some areas may require additional permits, which can drive up the cost of installation. Typically an installation will fall in the range of R10 000 to R25 000 depending on the size of the installation and the additional items required.

Payment method for your home solar system

There are several options for paying for your residential solar energy installation. The three most widely used choices are as follows:


Paying in cash is the most straightforward option when it comes to purchasing a solar system. By paying upfront, you’ll own the system outright, which means you’ll be eligible for any rebates and incentives available in your area. While paying in cash may seem like a significant upfront cost, it’s important to consider the long-term savings you’ll enjoy with a solar system.


For homeowners who want to install a solar system but lack the upfront funds to do so, rent-to-own is a fantastic choice. You’ll pay a monthly charge for the usage of the system with rent-to-own, with the option to purchase it entirely after a predetermined time. With this method of payment, you can spread out the system’s price over time, which lowers its overall cost.


Another choice for homeowners who want to install a solar system is financing. With financing, you can choose to pay back the money you borrow from a lender over a period of time in order to pay for the system. Home equity lines of credit and secured and unsecured loans are examples of financing choices. With financing, you may stretch out the expense of the system over a longer time period, which will make it simpler for you to manage your finances.

It’s important to thoroughly consider your alternatives when it comes to home solar system financing options. Budget, long-term objectives, and any local incentives or rebates should all be taken into account. You can benefit from a solar system without going broke with the correct payment method.

Tax Incentives

You might be qualified for discounts and tax incentives in some jurisdictions, which would dramatically lower the price of a solar system. Before making a choice, make sure to look into these choices in your community. Recently, in South Africa’s budget speech for 2023/2024, various tax incentives were announced for the implementation of solar systems. Individuals can claim back up to R15 000 for solar panels installed & companies receive a 125% benefit of the total panel cost on their taxable income.

glass filled with coins saved from the cost of home solar

Average Costs of a Home Solar System

On average, the cost of a home solar system can range from R60 000 to R250 000 or more, depending on the factors mentioned above. However, it’s essential to note that the cost of solar systems has been decreasing over the years, making them more affordable.

Savings Over Time from a Residential Solar System

Although a solar system may appear expensive up first, it’s crucial to think about the savings you can expect down the road. You may considerably lower and possibly even eliminate your energy expenses by producing your own electricity. Additionally, since solar panels can last up to 25 years, you will benefit from these savings for a very long time.


Long-term financial savings may result from installing a home solar system, which is a terrific investment. It’s important to consider the long-term savings and the environmental advantages of going solar, even though the initial price may be a deterrent. To choose the finest solar system for your home, be sure to explore your options, including incentives and rebates, and speak with a qualified installation.