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Empowering Western NC and Upstate SC with Solar Since 1995

Oct 1 is New Date to Attain ‘Legacy Customer’ Status

Good news for North Carolina residents: people who sign up to go solar by October 1 will be considered “legacy customers” by Duke. This is an extension from the original deadline of July 1, 2023 and will enable more folks to take advantage of some good benefits. Legacy customers will continue to receive full net metering through the end of 2026. That means they will receive a 1:1 credit for production of electricity from their solar system. This is the current status of net-metering in North Carolina and it will change for everyone, legacy customers or new ones, after 2026. Legacy customers simply get to hold on to current net-metering for another 3-plus years.

Another thing that will change for all after 2026 will be how ‘credit’ for over-production of electricity will be handled. Currently, all solar customers in NC have a yearly reset. This essentially means that overproduction in the height of summer can be used to offset the lower producing winter months. For legacy customers, the annual ‘reset’ will be in effect through 2026. Starting in 2027, the utility will credit legacy customers monthly for every watt produced beyond the amount of watts they used that month. The utility will pay the wholesale rate, about ⅓ of the retail rate of energy that the customer pays. This will be taken off the following month’s power bill. While it will no longer be the 1:1 value of each watt, solar customers will still receive some value for any extra electricity that they produce. Again, legacy customers will receive the full 1:1 pricing for energy produced through the end of 2026 while new customers after Oct 1 will go directly to the monthly reset policy.

More Details of New Plan

Currently, the monthly minimum billing fee for all electric power customers is $14. Under the new rules, the minimum rate will change. The new monthly minimum billing fee will be $22 for Duke Energy Carolinas customers and $28 for Duke Energy Progress customers. Keep in mind that most customers currently pay more than $14 per month because of other mandatory fees imposed by the utilities beyond the $14 base. On average, most customers are paying $17-$20 per month so this higher ‘monthly minimum’ fee will not be that much higher.

There will also be small monthly fees called non-bypassable charges: $0.36 per kW for Duke Energy Carolinas customers and $0.44 per kW for Duke Energy Progress customers.

Another benefit of being a legacy solar customer is that you will be able to choose between going with the utility’s ‘time-of-sue (TOU) rates or the negotiated ‘bridge rate’ after 2026. The bridge rate is also part of the negotiated deal and being a legacy customer offers the option to utilize this rate for 15 years from your solar interconnection date.

Sundance Helped Negotiate a Better Policy

Our Sundance Power System’s team knows how each detail of these policy changes will affect both existing and new customers. After all, our President and CEO, Dave Hollister, was a key part of the group that negotiated the new net metering policies with the utility!

We realize this sounds complicated and confusing, but the bottom line remains the same: solar power is the single best thing you can do for yourself and the planet. Let us guide you through your best options as these changes occur. With the newly extended deadline of October 1 for legacy customer status, it is key to get started as soon as possible in order to get the maximum benefit from your new solar system.

Contact Sundance today to get a free assessment.

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