Applications for the Federal Government’s $8,000 rebates on domestic solar power system are continuing to pour in at the rate of up to 700 a week, even though a new family income test of $100,000 per annum was introduced in the budget.

When the Federal Government introduced the income test, solar companies warned that it would have dire consequences for jobs and the industry. But applications have shot up since the budget with the rate of applications now 13 times greater than a year ago. Some companies have speculated that publicity surrounding the rebate acted as a de facto advertising campaign.

Demand for rooftop solar systems is growing so quickly that people are being forced to wait for up to nine months before they can be installed.

The figures also show that lower income households are prepared to pay more for power that comes from clean sources, with 20 per cent of the applicants earning between $20,000 and $40,000 a year and a further 22 per cent of applicants earning between $40,000 and $60,000 a year.