Paying for energy is a major and growing concern for everyone from individual consumers and businesses to municipalities and state governments. While state and federal laws limit what governments can do to influence energy prices, all energy consumers have more power to control their energy costs and expenditures than they might realize.
One of the best ways to lower energy costs is to simply use less energy by employing conservation and efficiency measures. While efficiency measures sometimes require an investment in upgrades to a building, conservation efforts are easy changes that can start saving you money today! To get started, visit:
- OSI's Energy Conservation Tips
While conservation measures are a great first step, energy efficiency upgrades have an even greater savings potential. Upgrades can range from simple insulation of an attic or basement to comprehensive air sealing measures; the package of upgrades that is right for your building depends on many factors, and the best way to get started is to hire an energy auditor.
- Consumers can seek out auditors or contractors who have a certification such as those from the Residential Energy Performance Association of New Hampshire, the Buildings Performance Institute, or the Association of Energy Engineers.
- For what to expect from your home audit, see this video developed by the MassSaves program .
- The US Government's Energy Star Rule Your Attic campaign provides tools and resources to save money by improving your home's insulation. (Including a rebate finder for product rebates and special offers!).
Once you have decided to move forward with an efficiency project, New Hampshire has a suite of rebate programs available to help with the cost. For more information, visit
The Department of Energy has also released a web-based financing navigator to assist private and public organizations discover financing solutions for energy efficiency projects.
See the sections below for helpful consumer information and resources by renewable energy type.
The Renewable Energy Incentives page has financial incentives developed at the state, federal and local level.
Solar Resources for Towns
Model Solar Zoning Ordinance
In light of recent increases in the development of solar facilities, New Hampshire communities must now determine how they wish to regulate and permit solar arrays. The New Hampshire Sustainable Energy Association’s Model Solar Zoning Ordinance builds on existing work in the state of New Hampshire and provides a framework for communities to regulate a wide range of solar systems. The approach for the Model provides basic education about the scale of arrays and suggests a step-by-step approach to developing reasonable ordinances and regulations based on traditional regulatory methods.
Solar 101 for Municipal Officials
The Solar 101 for Municipal Officials is targeted at New Hampshire town officials so that towns can reduce costs and simplify the process of implementing residential solar installations in their community. Topics include:
- planning and zoning
- permitting PV solar
- codes and inspections
- municipal PV installations
NH Guide to Residential Rooftop Solar PV Permitting, Zoning and Interconnection
OSI has developed the NH Guide to Residential Rooftop Solar PV Permitting, Zoning and Interconnection with information and tools to assist municipal officials, installers and others with implementing residential rooftop solar PV projects. The guide covers current laws and regulations impacting residential solar PV, recommendations for permitting and zoning and information about utility interconnection. Related tools are included in the Guide's Appendices; a Sample Solar PV Project Checklist, Sample Solar PV Permit Application, Sample Structural Review Worksheet (to be provided at a later date) and a Simplified Guide to Utility Interconnection Requirements.
- New Hampshire Residential Rooftop Solar PV Permitting, Zoning and Interconnection Guide - January 2015
- Appendix A - Sample Permit Checklist
- Appendix B - Sample Standardized Residential Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Permit Application
- Appendix C - Sample Structural Review Worksheet
- Appendix D - Simplified New Hampshire Utility Interconnection Requirements
New Hampshire Solar Permitting Rules
Resources showing the distribution of solar PV, permitting requirements, and local ordinances across New Hampshire.
- Permitting and Ordinances for Solar PV in New Hampshire (map produced at NH Office of Strategic Initiatives, January 13, 2015)
Solar Friendly Planning for New Hampshire Communities
The Southern New Hampshire Planning Commission has created a quick resource guide for planning boards and municipal officials in crafting solar friendly regulations and developing solar friendly communities in New Hampshire.
The Renewable Energy Incentives page lists a number of opportunities for towns to create incentives for renewable energy systems. The page includes maps of towns that offer property tax exemptions for renewable energy systems.
Solar Resources for Individuals and Businesses
Thinking about installing solar at your home?
- The Solar 101 Workshops available online provide an excellent overview for New Hampshire residents interested in learning more about going solar. The workshops were produced in partnership with the Clean Energy States Alliance and Lakes Region Community College. Topics include:
- PV fundamentals
- panel placement
- permitting and grid interconnection
- financing and incentives
- installer selection
- See the Renewable Energy Incentives page for resources, including a map of towns in New Hampshire that officially offer property tax exemptions for solar systems.
- The Clean Energy States Alliance is developing a number of resources for consumers including consumer protection information, community solar, and solar for low and moderate income residents through their Sustainable Solar Education Project
- The Clean Energy States Alliance has also published a guide to solar financing for homeowners in English and in Spanish
- EPA information about Solar Power Purchase Agreements
- See additional resources at the Sustainable Energy Division of the PUC
- New Hampshire Sustainable Energy Association Resources Page
The Clean Energy States Alliance is developing a number of resources for consumers including consumer protection information, community solar, and solar for low and moderate income residents through their Sustainable Solar Education Project
New Hampshire Sustainable Energy Association Resources Page
NABCEP accredits solar companies that meet a standard of quality and integrity laid out by the American National Standards Institute. Their website offers a tool for finding certified professionals by state.
Community Solar and Power Purchase Agreements's
- Department of Energy Guide to Community Solar
- Solar Pathways Community Solar Toolkit provides websites, guides, case studies, white papers and more about community solar.
- Energy Sage is a start-up for-profit website to inform consumers about solar options in their state. The platform aims to work as a "Priceline" or "Travelocity", allowing consumers to compare and price vendors.
Wind Power Resources can be found at the Public Utilites Commission Substainable Energy Division page.
Deliverable Fuel Savings
For deliverable fuels (e.g. oil and propane), savings may be found by utilizing a Pre-buy Contract for Heating Fuels or a Fuel Payment Budget Plan. Please note that these options provide potential monetary savings only, and do not reduce the amount of fuel used.