Energy

How to Apply for the Balcony Solar Subsidy in Berlin

By

Dolly H

23.2.2023

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Berlin aims to become climate-neutral by 2045. To achieve this goal, the SolarPLUS program has been providing support since February 2023, offering 500 € to Berlin residents who want to install plug-in solar devices or balcony power plants on their balcony or in their garden.

Since October 2023, it has been clear that the program will be extended (and expanded) for 2024. Additionally, owners of self-used property as well as tenants of small and recreational gardens can now also benefit from the SolarPlus program funding.

The mini solar modules significantly enable more households to produce climate-neutral electricity and become independent from electricity prices and the power grid. The Berlin Senate, with the help of the Investment Bank Berlin (IBB), aims to promote this. The IBB Business Team is responsible for the funding.

Here is everything you need to know if you live in Berlin and are considering getting a mini solar system.

Who Can Apply for Balcony Solar Funding?

Before you decide to buy a balcony power plant, you should inform yourself about the funding conditions, as there are several aspects to consider. For example, the application for funding (Module E) must be submitted before purchasing the solar module.

  • Have your primary residence in Berlin
  • Be a tenant of an apartment or
  • Live in your property or
  • Be a tenant of a small and recreational garden

In addition, as a tenant, you need the permission of your landlord for the installation. But as a homeowner, you must declare that the house or community rules do not prohibit solar modules.

For tenants of small and recreational gardens, it's a bit more specific. You do not need permission if the plug-in solar device is to be attached to terrace enclosures, facades, or fences, or if it is to be placed on the ground on other surfaces. However, if you want to install the solar modules on your summer house or other buildings in your garden, you must confirm that written permission from the landowner or from the intermediate tenant (district association of gardeners) is available.

You can apply for a grant per apartment, which will be paid out to you after three months. To receive your payout, you need to provide evidence of use and proof of purchase.

Important: This applies to projects that have not yet begun. Make sure to apply for the funding before you buy a solar module.

Which Solar Modules Are Covered By The 500 € Funding?

Balcony power plant is the term for smaller systems that are suitable for home use. The more precise term is plug-in solar device since the solar modules and the inverter do not require complicated assembly but can be easily installed by yourself and just need to be plugged into a socket. They are not limited to the balcony but can naturally also be mounted at other places on your property. For example, in your garden, on your terrace, or on your garden shed. To be eligible for funding, your desired plug-in solar device must only have a maximum power of 600 watts.

Moreover, you will only be funded for the amount you spend on the solar set. For example, the installation of an electricity socket on your balcony is not funded, and if the balcony power plant costs only 489 €, you will also only receive 489 € and not the full amount of 500 €. Therefore, it is also referred to as a maximum funding amount of 500 €. However, this also means that you must pay the purchase amount over 500 € yourself.

Is My Balcony Suitable For Solar Modules?

Before you consider the SolarPLUS funding, you need to check whether your balcony is suitable for it. Usually, tenants opt for one or two panels for home power generation. How many hours of sunshine does your balcony receive on sunny days? General considerations like these will be taken into account when assessing your application. It is also important to check how the solar modules can be installed on the balcony and whether suitable fixtures are available. Solar modules are heavy and must be securely fastened to prevent any mishaps.

What Will My Home Solar System Cost?

The SolarPLUS funding offers a maximum of 500 € funding per solar module. Since the start of the funding program, a lot has changed, and the prices for solar modules have dropped significantly. If you receive the funding, you can often already pay for the entire balcony power plant with it, essentially getting your plug-in solar device for free.

As more and more customers discover the potential of balcony power plants, there are also more and more specialized providers offering perfectly tailored solar sets for your balcony, garden, or flat roof. These always include tested inverters, the corresponding mounts, and everything else you need for a safe installation.

In the Ostrom Store, we have a wide range of balcony power options from premium manufacturers: from super thin solar modules from WeDoSolar, to efficient modules from Climatos, or bifacial modules from priwatt.

If you are an Ostrom customer, you can even integrate the priwatt sets into our Ostrom App and monitor the production of your modules live at any time.

What to Consider After Purchase?

Once your funding application has been approved, you must acquire your solar set within one year, otherwise, the funding commitment expires. Additionally, the plug-in solar device must be used for at least 3 years after the installation is completed at the location specified in the application and cannot be set up elsewhere.

To operate the balcony power plant, you must also register it with Stromnetz Berlin. This can be done easily via the simplified registration form on the Stromnetz Berlin website. Subsequently, you will also get a new electricity meter installed for free.

Additionally, you must register the system in the Market Master Data Register. You can do this here.

After purchasing, registering, and registering your balcony power plant, you can now submit the usage proofs and receive the payout of your funding amount. This must be done within 3 months after the installation is completed or the registration is finalized.

To receive the payout of the funding amount, you simply need to upload the following documents in the electronic application system of the IBB Business Team:

  • Confirmation of registration with Stromnetz Berlin
  • The invoice of your purchase

The IBB Balcony Solar Application Form

When you're ready to apply for the solar funding, go to the IBB Business Team website. Fill in the form with your email address and your name and send it to start the process. Within about ten minutes, you will receive an email in your inbox. In this email, you will receive a link to create a username and password, which you must use within 24 hours. Once you have created a password and logged in, you will see your dashboard. In the box at the top left, you will find instructions on how to apply for the solar funding.


IBB Solar Application Instructions in English

TLDR: Information on Berlin's Solar Funding

If you are registered with a permanent residence in Berlin and are renting, you can apply for a subsidy of up to 500 € for installing PV solar systems at your home.

Here's an overview of the individual steps again:

  1. Apply for the application through IBB Business online before you get started.
  2. Purchase the solar module
  3. Register your plug-in solar device with Stromnetz Berlin
  4. Register your plug-in solar device in the Market Master Data Register
  5. Upload the invoice and confirmation of registration with the power grid in the IBB Business Portal

Here are a few useful resources for you:

Solarwende

IBB Business Team

Solarplus portal to apply

Detailed overview of terms and guidelines (in German)

Letter to your landlord template (“Musterschrieben” in German)

Programs like these are complicated and the conditions change constantly. We always recommend talking to the representatives at IBB and SolarWende for the most up-to-date information. We hope this blog helps you get started on your solar journey.


*Climate-Neutral Berlin 2045, www.berlin.de, 2023
**SolarPLUS Programme, www.ibb-business.team, 2023