Steve is factoring in the four years of tax advantages to our state income tax, the one year tax advantage from the feds, and the rebate from the Energy Trust of Oregon. I don't know what the current tax codes allow for solar PV and hot water installations, or if any other states or provinces or even countries have the same kind of energy entity that the state of Oregon has, but our calculations will undoubtedly be different than your calculations.
|Taking up space in the living room|
The other thing to consider is where you are in the world: if you're in Arizona or Colorado, you are going to do a lot better than we are and may be able to use more energy than we do because you're producing more but even that might be a net equation factoring in your air conditioner. We don't have one and have decided that we'll never have one. If you live in San Francisco where much of the summer is shrouded in fog, solar may not work for you. I don't know. There are a lot of things to consider for your own individual situation.
I just wanted you to know that there were mitigating circumstances that made our final costs so low and that we do have freakishly low energy usage. If you're thinking about solar, you still should still consider it- just don't expect your results to be the same as ours.
They could be not as good, but they could also be lot better.