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‘I slashed my energy bills from £92 to zero thanks to solar panels and battery’ | Personal Finance | Finance


A man has shared his story of how he reduced his energy bills from more than £90 a month to virtually nothing after installing solar panels and a storage battery.

Graham Johnston saw his bill for September 2023 drop to £25 a year, down from £92 last September. And thanks to his battery, he was able to sell some of the energy he generated to the grid, earning him £25.49 and completely offsetting his bill.

He decided to install the solar panels on his house first because electricity and gas prices had risen dramatically.

He told “It was a great time to install and start saving. The process itself was much simpler than I expected.

“It was all done within a day, and I was saving immediately. With the renewable energy in place, not only was I able to power my house much less, but also my electric car.”

Mr Johnston then noticed that much of the excess solar energy he was generating was going back into the grid so he decided to install battery storage.

He said: “From that point, I started selling my excess energy back to the grid, making money back on the energy I generated.”

When he came to sell the property, he said he was “shocked” by the wave of interest from potential buyers. He explained: “So many people were interested, asking about the solar panels and battery storage and the EPC rating It helped sell the house within a week.

“For me, the decision didn’t make much sense. Not only is it good for the environment, but why wouldn’t you want to do your part if it saves you money too?”

The solar panels cost £6,000 to install and the battery cost another £5,000. Mr Johnston is a Halifax customer and the bank gave him £500 towards costs through its Green Living Reward scheme.

The scheme offers a cash back reward to mortgage customers who have green energy improvements to their home.

The eco-defender sold the house at second sight and with the sale he reimbursed his costs from the solar plant. He said: “When the energy savings from the solar panels were communicated to the buyer, they made an offer and a similar house that was on the market just before me (without solar panels) has yet to sell.”

Halifax is also running a trial scheme with solar panel supplier Effective Home, where consumers receive a free solar plan, detailing installation costs and estimated energy bill savings.

Mr Johnston has now moved to a property in Shropshire and has a quote for solar installation on his new home, and has applied for Green Living Reward again.

He estimates that the new property will cost £8,250, including the remuneration.

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