There is a big difference between being off the grid and tied to the grid.
Off grid has it's challenges with batteries and DC appliances (but appliances do not need to be DC). Grid tied systems are cost effective. Price for panels has dropped substantially and continues to get cheaper. Micro inverters improve efficiency per panel in lieu of strings of panels. It is basically plug and play these days. There are so many reasons to go solar. I can buy 235 watt panels for $90 each new. 325 watt panels for $135! I can install my own system for way under $10k and produce enough electricity to zero out my energy bill. For me, that means my system is payed for itself in under 7 years. After that, my power is free and the panels should produce at that rate for 25+ years.
Read Home Power Magazine and you can learn a lot about the benefits for yourself.