Why do so few people install solar power kits for homes in US?

I get his question quite often and this post will try to set the record straight about solar power kits for homes.  Let me start with the facts – Solar is an excellent investment in the following states Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts,Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Washington and Washington D.C.  Florida has just joined the club with recent new legislation.

Solar Power Kits for Homes

There in lies the rub – solar is very good in certain states because the combination of state and federal incentives makes the solar investment a  NO BRAINER. If you are a home owner in any one of these states, you are paying too much for electricity. You can switch to solar and save some serious $$’s; read this for more information of solar power kits for homes.

Home Solar is an emerging industry and it is growing in leaps and bounds. However it will take some time to get the message to all homeowners. The penetration of new technology follows the hockey stick curve. The initial growth is slow, but once it hits critical mass, growth explodes. I predict we will see home solar power kits adoption mimic the microwave oven in the next 10 years.

Solar is really inexpensive and is a no brainer for  home owners. The lease or PPA programs are flavors of solar power kits or homes that are basically the equivalent of  renting solar panels.  Once you rent the panels your electric bill from the utility company will reduce to $ 10 or less per month ( provided your solar system size is correct  sized and makes enough power to take care of your entire home’s electric usage.)  The rental cost per month is between 20% to 40% lower than your current electric bill.

As an example – my average home electric bill was $ 250 a month. I had high bills in summer when I ran the AC and lower bills in winter. But my average was about $ 250.  There were no upfront costs to renting the panels – the solar companies call it the Solar Lease or the Solar PPA.  Once the panels were installed on my home – I had to pay nothing to get the installation done – my electric bill from my power company PSE&G came down to about $ 2.99 per month.  I had to pay the solar company a rental of $ 145 per month. I saved over a $100 a month or over $1200 per year and I did not have to pay a dime out of pocket.  Yes, it is a long term agreement. Its over 20 years and the monthly price of my rental goes up by about $4 a year, but hey, I will still be paying less than $250 AFTER 20 years. And the cost of my utility companies electricity goes up by over $8 to $10 a year anyway.  My guess is my savings will actually increase over the years. The rental is transferable – if I sell my home the next guy takes over the rental.  Yes, he has to agree, but only a dummy would want to pay more to the utility company.

Since I rented my system over 3 years ago, there is a new purchase option which is now very popular.  For many of your who want to own your solar system – this might be the best way to go. The solar companies are now working with finance companies and offer low cost loans towards the purchase of the system.  As a buyer you get the federal and state incentives and in most of these states you will get a monthly check for those incentives. So your loan payment less the monthly incentive earnings usually comes out to over 50% or lower than your current electric bill.  Again a no brainer.

There are some circumstances where solar power kits for homes may not work out –

a) No state incentives. This is not true in the states I have mentioned earlier in this post.

b) Your utility company charges very low rates and thus the solar rental or monthly payments for purchase don’t give you enough savings – this is usually rare.

c) You don’t get enough hours of bright sunshine because of trees casting shadow on your roof  OR your roof does not have enough area to fit adequate number of panels.  FYI, Panels can also be installed on the ground if you have a large yard.

Why do so few people in the US install solar panels on their homes - Ground Mount

In conclusion – my prediction is that home solar power kits will  become ubiquitous in the next 10 years.  For all of you who are reading this post – do look at your solar options. I think you are leaving money on the table. My solar system was installed by an excellent NJ based company called Ampericon.

There is a lot more you can do with solar. Check out the all these articles. Thank you for visiting mysolarhome.us.

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Author: Michael Bennet

A solar energy professional with eight years of marketing and installation experience. Avid and passionate about the adoption of solar and related technologies in all homes. Blog about all things solar at mysolarhome.us.

4 thoughts on “Why do so few people install solar power kits for homes in US?”

  1. Solar Panels and Solar Home installations have become tremendously economical. Our website is one of the largest solar markets and helps thousands go solar with the best solar vendors in the country. We are definitely bullish on solar like you. Thanks good stuff.

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