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Accounting For Solar Installers

Updated: Nov 21, 2023



As a solar installer, you understand the importance of providing clean, renewable energy to your customers. But did you know that proper accounting is also crucial to the success of your business? Good accounting practices can help you track and manage your finances, stay compliant with tax laws, and make informed business decisions. Without accurate and timely financial information, it can be difficult to properly manage your business and ensure its long-term viability.


Tracking Installation Costs

One of the key accounting challenges for solar installers is tracking the costs and benefits of the solar panels and systems that you install. These costs can include the purchase price of the panels and equipment, as well as installation and labor costs. The benefits can include government incentives, such as tax credits, as well as the revenue generated from the sale of solar energy to your customers.


Properly tracking and accounting for these costs and benefits can be complex, and it is important to work with a knowledgeable and experienced accountant who can help you navigate the complexities of the solar industry. Your accountant can help you set up accounting systems and processes that are tailored to your specific needs and can provide valuable guidance on tax planning and compliance.


In addition to tracking costs and benefits, proper accounting can also help you manage your cash flow and ensure that you have the financial resources to grow your business. This can include setting up a budget, tracking expenses, and managing accounts receivable and accounts payable.


Revenue Recognition

One key area of accounting that is particularly relevant to solar installers is revenue recognition, which is governed by Accounting Standards Codification (ASC) 606.

Under ASC 606, companies must recognize revenue when it is realized or earned, and when the company has satisfied its performance obligations. This means that, as a solar installer, you must carefully track and account for the costs and benefits associated with each installation project.

To illustrate, consider a scenario where you've entered into a contract to install a solar panel system for a customer. You've successfully installed the photovoltaic panels on the roof, but the main panel upgrade and electrical work are still pending. In this situation, you can't recognize the revenue for the entire contract until the system is fully operational. Instead, you must recognize a portion of the total contract cost that corresponds to the completed work, reflecting the percentage of the project that has been fulfilled. This approach ensures accurate and compliant revenue recognition in accordance with ASC 606 guidelines.


Under ASC 606, you would need to carefully track and account for the costs associated with the installation of the panels, including the purchase price of the panels and equipment, as well as installation and labor costs. You would also need to track the revenue generated from the sale of solar energy to the customer and recognize this revenue as it is earned.

Properly tracking and accounting for revenue under ASC 606 can be complex, and it is important to work with a knowledgeable and experienced accountant who can help you navigate the requirements of the standard. Your accountant can help you set up accounting systems and processes that are tailored to your specific needs and can provide valuable guidance on revenue recognition and compliance with ASC 606.

Work with a Solar Installer Accountant


Good accounting practices are indeed crucial for the success of your solar installation business. They enable you to maintain a clear financial picture, ensure compliance with tax regulations, and empower you to make well-informed decisions. To achieve these goals, partnering with a knowledgeable and experienced accountant is essential.


At GFT Accounting, we specialize in serving solar installers like you, and we are well-versed in ASC 606 accounting standards. Our team of experts understands the unique financial challenges and opportunities in the solar industry. We are committed to helping you streamline your accounting processes, optimize your tax strategies, and ultimately boost your bottom line.


Don't leave your accounting to chance. Choose GFT Accounting as your trusted partner, and take the first step towards financial success in your solar installation business. Contact us today for a consultation and let us show you how we can make a difference in your business's financial health. Your success is our priority.

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