Commercial Solar Power Feasibility Study

The feasibility study is an important step before installing a solar array: a professional analysis gives you an accurate picture of technical requirements, project costs, electricity generation, and the potential savings and income you can achieve. A feasibility study can also identify any structural or electrical upgrades that are necessary before installing a commercial solar array.

Know Your Return on Investment

Get a detailed financial assessment of your commercial solar project before making a major investment decision.

Claim Solar Incentives

Identify all incentives available for commercial solar PV systems in your location, and make sure you qualify.

Meet All Local Codes and Regulations

Our team of experts can help you meet local codes, permitting requirements, environmental regulations and interconnection requirements.

Commercial Solar Feasibility Study: Step By Step

Solar Generation Potential Assessment

NY Engineers can analyze the photovoltaic generation potential at any project site, using official weather databases and solar simulation software. You will get an accurate calculation of how much electricity can be generated each year, based on actual site conditions.

Our design team can also rule out issues that limit solar generation, such as shading from surrounding buildings. They will identify any conditions that may hinder the performance of your solar array, and propose effective solutions from the start.

Electrical and Structural Assessment

Our engineering team will analyze the existing installations to determine if they are suitable for a commercial solar array. They will conduct an assessment of electrical installations and local grid capacity, identifying any upgrades necessary before going solar. A structural assessment is also provided in the case of rooftop installations.

NY Engineers can also analyze the feasibility of adding an energy storage system to your commercial solar array, and determine the optimal storage capacity if that is the case.

Detailed List of Permitting Requirements

NY Engineers will identify all the requirements that must be met before your commercial solar array can be installed. These include construction codes, environmental regulations and grid interconnection requirements.

If your project is located in New York state, we can help you complete the State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) and Coordinated Electric System Interconnection Review (CESIR).

  • The SEQR is required for solar arrays covering more than 10 acres, or 2.5 acres in agricultural districts. Rooftop solar arrays are exempt from this requirement.
  • The CESIR is generally required for projects over 50 kW, which may have a local impact on the power grid.
Identifying All Solar Incentives Available

There are many types of financial incentives for solar photovoltaic systems, which increase your return on investment. These include grants, rebates, tax exemptions, tax credits, and low-interest or zero-interest loans. The benefits available in New York state include the NY-Sun Megawatt Block Program and Retail Energy Storage Incentive Program from NYSERDA.

At NY Engineers we have ample experience with solar incentive programs and their requirements. We offer commercial solar designs that qualify under local and national incentive programs, and our team can handle the application process for you.

Professional Solar Design

Your commercial solar project is designed according to all applicable codes and regulations, while considering the requirements of incentive programs. Our experts can determine the optimal and layout for your photovoltaic array, based on a careful assessment of electricity needs and the solar radiation available at the project site.

Design Approval and Permitting

Our experienced design team ensures a quick project approval with the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ). Having an approved solar PV design in a short time is critical when applying for incentive programs that have limited budgets.

Effective Project Management

NY Engineers is not only a design and consulting firm. Our team can manage your entire project throughout its life cycle, including the bidding and construction stages, and O&M once your solar array is operational.

We also manage all applications required by incentive programs, while helping you secure project financing at low interest rates.

Solar Power Benefits for Commercial Building Owners

Solar Power Adapts to Any Property

Solar panels can be installed on almost any area with adequate sunshine, and they can adapt to the site conditions of almost any commercial building. At NY Engineers we design solar power systems in any configuration: rooftop, ground mount, canopy, carport, etc.

Compliance with Climate Laws

If your local government has renewable energy mandates or building emission limits, solar panels can help you meet them. In the case of New York City, a commercial solar system can increase your building energy grade under Local Law 33 of 2018, while helping you avoid penalties for emissions under Local Law 97 of 2019.

Boost Corporate Image and Attract Tenants

When a large solar array is visible on a commercial roof or carport, it sends a clear message that your company is lowering its environmental footprint. If your building includes commercial spaces for rent, potential tenants will associate the solar array with lower energy costs and emissions.

Long-Term Energy Savings

High-quality solar panels have a service life of more than 25 years, and they have simple maintenance requirements. There are no moving parts subject to mechanical wear, and solar panels only need regular cleaning to maximize the sunlight reaching their photovoltaic cells.

When a commercial solar array is engineered properly, and financed with a low-interest loan, the energy savings achieved are typically much higher than the loan payments.

Increase the Asset Value of Your Buildings

A building that is capable of generating its own electricity becomes a more valuable asset. Solar panels can operate for more than 25 years, and future increases in electricity tariffs only make them more valuable.

Thanks to the Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System (MACRS) you can write off the cost of a commercial solar array as depreciation over a 5-year period, and this becomes a tax deductible expense.

Avoid Volatile Energy Prices

Once the initial investment is covered, the costs associated with owning a commercial solar array are very low. Annual operation and maintenance costs are typically less than 1% of upfront capital costs. You also need new inverters after around 10-12 years, but they only represent around 6% of total PV system costs.

On the other hand, electricity tariffs are volatile and unpredictable. In the 12-month period between August 2021 and August 2022, US electricity prices were up by 15.8% on average. This means the savings achieved by a commercial solar array increase over time.

Solar Power In The US: By The Numbers

1. Fastest Growing Electricity Source

Solar power represents 46% of new power generation capacity being added by the US, according to the Energy Information Administration.

2. US Solar Power Broke Records in 2021

The US solar industry installed 23.6 gigawatts in 2021, reaching an accumulated capacity of 121.4 gigawatts, enough to power 23.3 million households. This figure includes 2.39 gigawatts of commercial and community solar projects, and 17 GW of utility-scale projects.

3. Economies of Scale

Commercial solar systems can achieve installed costs below $2,000 per kilowatt, and large industrial and grid-scale systems can reach costs below $1,000 per kilowatt.

4. Growing Electricity Savings

US electricity prices were up by 15.8% in the 12-month period ending in August 2022. Between July 2021 and July 2022, the average electricity tariff for commercial users in New York increased from 17.43 to 19.96 cents/kWh. The electricity savings achieved by a commercial solar array increase along with kWh prices.

Financial Guidance For Your Solar PV Project


Detailed Financial Breakdown

NY Engineers makes sure your commercial solar project is both technically and financially viable. We provide detailed financial scenarios with all the information you need to make an investment decision, including:

  • Solar PV system installation costs
  • Government and utility incentives available
  • Annual and monthly electricity generation, and the corresponding savings or revenue
  • Cash flow projections, including any financial incentives and loans used in the project
  • Levelized cost of electricity (LCOE)
  • Key financial metrics: Net present value (NPV), internal rate of return (IRR), benefit/cost ratio (BCR), simple payback period, etc.

Before installing your commercial solar array, you will have a clear picture of all the costs and savings involved, and how they are distributed over time.

Find the Ideal Purchasing Option

We provide a detailed comparison of all your solar PV purchasing options, with the costs and savings involved in each case:

  • Upfront cash payment
  • Loan financing
  • Leasing a commercial solar array
  • Solar Power Purchase Agreement (PPA)

We also analyze how each purchasing option affects the financial performance of your solar array. Solar incentives are normally awarded to the legal owner of the system: they belong to your company if the solar array is purchased, but they belong to the solar provider if you sign a lease or PPA contract.

Compare Your Financing Options

Your commercial array may qualify for low-interest or even zero-interest financing options, which can help avoid a major capital expenditure upfront. NY Engineers has ample experience with the eligibility requirements of solar incentive programs and loans.

In the case of New York, we can obtain financing from the NYSERDA NY Green Bank or the Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) programs available in the state. The combination of incentives and low-interest financing can often reduce upfront costs to $0, and the savings/revenue achieved when the project is operational are much higher than the corresponding loan payments.

Solar Rebate Programs and Tax Benefits

Our feasibility study considers all the incentives available for your commercial solar project, and how they improve cash flow projections. These include:

  • The Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), commonly known as the solar federal tax credit. In August 2022, the ITC was increased from 26% to 30% and extended through 2034.
  • Local incentives such as NYSERDA’s NY-Sun Megawatt Block Program and Retail Energy Storage Incentive Program.

The incentives available for commercial solar arrays depend on your location and utility company. These may include cash rebates, grants, tax exemptions, tax credits, etc. Regardless of the solar incentives available, NY Engineers can design your project according to their requirements, making sure you qualify.

Get In Touch

Commercial Solar PV Cost Proposal

1. Quick Design and Approval

Project designs by NY Engineers are completed 50% faster, while having an 80% first-time approval rate with local building authorities. Start your project before material prices increase further, and claim solar incentives that have limited funding before they run out.

2. Customized Solar Design

Your commercial solar PV design will have the optimal capacity and layout, based on the site conditions of your building or facility. We can design any system configuration to take advantage of the space available: rooftop, ground mount, carport or canopy.

3. Meet Local Codes and Regulations

NY Engineers can easily adapt your solar PV system design based on local building codes, zoning requirements, laws and regulations. Permitting requirements like the State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) and Coordinated Electric System Interconnection Review (CESIR) are met without delays.

4. Optimize Costs and Get Incentives

NY Engineers has financing experts in-house. We combine solar incentives and low-interest loans to minimize upfront costs, while increasing your ROI. We have ample experience with technical requirements from NYSERDA and other program managers, ensuring your project qualifies for their incentives.