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A Solar return chart is ideally prepared at the time of or just before our birthday, although this chart can be prepared at any time to obtain useful information from birthday to birthday.

A solar return chart is prepared on the exact day that the Sun returns to its original positon in the natal chart, (to the sign, degree and minute, precisely). So if the Sun in the birth chart is in Capricorn at 15 degrees 12 minutes, the Solar return sun would be in this exact position for the year it is being prepared.

A Solar return chart is prepared in the same fashion as a birth (natal) chart. We would use the exact time of birth and place of residence (wherever we are living or staying on the date being used to prepare the Solar return (as the place dictates the midheaven degree).

It would be read as a birth chart although it would only pertains for the year from birthday to birthday.

Some individuals begin to feel the energies of the solar placement as they approach their birthday (as much as 3 months prior to the actual birthday). If the chart were prepared three months prior to the birthday, this would assist in preparing the individual for the energies that would be at hand and what areas of life would be emphasized.

The Ascendant sign and ruling planet, the Moon and its sign and house position, the Sun and its house position as well as any major configurations and tight aspects will play significant roles in the upcoming year the would be forecasted. If the Solar chart has many similarities to the natal chart, it will be an important year, especially if the rising sign is close in degree to the rising sign in the natal chart.

The Moon plays a very significant role and its sign and house position along with any aspects it receives would define our overall emotional makeup for the upcoming year. When it comes to transits, the solar chart remains intact for the year but transiting planets can make aspects to these positions and can be delineated in a similar fashion to the way we would define birth aspects.

We should also look into the aspect from the transits to the natal positions as this will help us get a clear picture of what to expect and will also provide timers for events and areas of life that might be involved.

Although in a Solar chart the Sun is in the same sign and degree as the natal chart, its house placement might be different and these energies will play out in very important ways throughout the year as this solar placement receives aspects from transits.

There are many other facets to take into consideration but the Solar chart on its own will define clearly what to expect in the year being covered by the solar chart and will correlate with the transits and progressions to the natal chart (as indicated in a Transit and Progression chart which is yet another separate chart that can be prepared). The Solar chart detailed dimensions to the overall translation of upcoming energies and events in the forecast for the year ahead (if the chart is being prepared for an upcoming birthday).

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