Re: New and Overwhelmed!
So let's just assume for the moment that it will cost ~$25k to bring a meter to the house.
The same $25k will by a PV system that might be 3 kw say.
Using my off grid rule of thumb, that 3 kw system might produce 3000/2*4=6kwh net/net out of the inverter of usable power. (Battery based systems run ~55% efficient (or less,, more on that later) and certainly on a year round basis one can't count on much more than 4 hours of good sun every day.
Now, keep in mind, that a very efficient, well managed house might use anywhere from say 10-30 kwh/day. So you can easily see that battery based solar is hobbled by it's expense, and it's limited capacity.
Add to that, ~1/2 the cost of a battery based system is the batteries, which have a finite life span,, seldom more than 10 years of full time use, so you have to calculate in the replacement cost of the batteries in this case. So let's say you have $10,000 worth of batteries in the above system, and they last 10 years,, that is $1000/year, or $83 per month, just to amortize the batteries.
So while being free of the power company is a great idea, one has to seriously consider the cost, and the limitation. That said, I am not meaning to discourage you, but rather keep your eyes open.
In addition to your PV system you will need a significant generator system to power the house during construction, and to keep the batteries up when the sun isn't sufficient. (Adding to the net cost, plus fuel/maintenance etc.)
All this said, all the conservation choices you might make for an off grid house, you might rightly make for a grid tie house as well, as the benefits are just as important, even though they may "pay off" slower.
All things being equal, I would bite the bullet, get the power, but design for (and hopefully) install grid tie, get the tax credits and the utility credits while they are still available. That way, you can turn the tables on the utility by making your meter run backwards all the time you live in the house. By being able to start with a clean slate, should make any install somewhat cheaper, and certainly more efficient.
PS That same $25,000 that I was talking about earlier, might buy ~5kw of Pv, yielding ~ 5000*.90*4=18kwh/day, 6 times as much power for the same money. Add to that tax credits and utility rebates, state and local incentives that may or may not be able to off grid systems, and the net cost might ~1/2 of that, making a grid tie system ~12 times more financially efficient. (I don't know in the US if tax credits (state and local) are available to off grid,, I'm sure others will add)
PS My per watt cost of battery based vs grid tie may not be quite on as the prices have change a bit in the last while, others can chime in, but the relationship between the two is still about the same.
Please note, being a moderator does not add any weight to my opinions 300 watts Siemens/BP panels,plus a Sun 90,, making ~400. ~30 amps into Rogue MPT-3024, 450 ah of Trojan T-105, Morningstar ts300 inverter, a Tri-Metric meter.a collection of antique generators, plus 2 Honda eu-1000i's (also a BS2512 IX controller) and assorted other stuff!