Solar Tax Credit

Solar PanelsThe City of Charlottesville offers a tax credit for certified solar energy equipment, facilities or devices that are attached to real estate within the City of Charlottesville. The tax credit applies a portion of the total cost of the solar equipment, facilities, or devices as a credit on the real estate tax bill for 5 years. A successful application must be made to receive this tax credit.

Certified Solar Energy Equipment Definition

Certified solar energy equipment, facilities or devices means any property, including real or personal property, equipment, facilities or devices, certified by the division of building and life safety to be designed and used primarily for the purpose of providing for the collection and use of incident solar energy for water heating, space heating or cooling or other application which would otherwise require a conventional source of energy such as petroleum products, natural gas or electricity.

How to Apply for the Solar Tax Credit

Owners of the real estate to which the certified solar energy equipment, facilities or devices are attached must complete an application process to receive the solar tax credit.

  1. The solar energy equipment, facilities or devices must be fully installed before the solar tax credit application is submitted.
  2. A final inspection by the City’s Building Inspectors must be complete to close out the solar project’s permit. Note that this final inspection typically requires the contractor/installer to meet the City Inspector on site.
  3. The final inspection should also be complete before the solar tax credit application is submitted. For questions regarding this process and to schedule a final inspection, contact the Department of Neighborhood Development Services at 434-970-3182.
  4. Complete the Solar Energy Tax Exemption/Credit Application (PDF). Note: the application includes a 1-page "Contractor/Supplier Statement of Cost" form that must be notarized.
  5. Submit the completed application to:
    Neighborhood Development Services, City of Charlottesville
    610 E Market Street
    P.O. Box 911
    Charlottesville, VA 22902


Installation and inspection must be complete by December 31. Completed application forms must be submitted by January 15. (Note: The application deadline was relaxed in December 2015. It was formerly September 30.)