• Save money on your electric bill
• Rates don’t increase based on inflation, they increase at a set rate for the life of the contract
• You don’t have to insure the panels
• You don’t have to worry about getting permits
• No installation headaches
• No maintenance headaches
• You decrease your carbon footprint
• Homes with solar sell faster
• No fees
• No $18,000 investment
• You don’t collect the solar tax incentives
5 Things You Need to Ask Your No-Cost Solar Provider
1) How much do you charge per watt?
2) How much do your rates increase each year?
3) How long does it take to get permits in my city?
4) Do you insure the panels?
5) How how long does the contract last?
6) What is your moving policy?
How Much Do You Charge Per Watt?
This will vary depending on the state and the company, but you can expect to pay between 13-15 cents per watt of solar-generated electricity. Some companies go even lower, but don’t pay more than 15 cents watt. Now your current utility provide may not charge that much more per watt, but they charge additional fees. Solar panels don’t carry the extra fees or baggage
How Much Do Your Rates Increase Each Year?
Solar companies shouldn’t increase your rates based on inflation. Look for a no-cost solar company that will give you no more than 3-4% increase each year. This is much better than how inflation increases the rates that your utility company provides.
How Long does It Take To Get Permits In My City?
Solar permitting is done at a city or county level. This is good information no matter which company you choose. We have seen some cities take 2 weeks and others take 10 weeks. Your local solar rep should be able to help you know what to expect.
Do You Insure The Panels?
It is reasonable to expect the owner of the panels to insure them. Make sure that the contract includes insurance coverage as well as maintenance. Sometimes snow needs to be removed or the panels need to be cleaned. That should be their responsibility.
How Long Does The Contract Last?
Generally panels will last 25 years. So stick with a company that keeps their contract length under 15 year. 20 years is what you can expect from a no-cost solar contract.
What Is Your Moving Policy?
Make sure that if something unexpected caused you to move in the next year, 5 years or 15 years, you would be free to go. No-cost solar companies should have a program that allows you to move and transfer the solar-electric bill into the new homeowner’s name, much like you would with any utility bill.
We recommend adding to these questions based on your circumstances, but this will give you a good idea of the big picture and help you find a company that has good prices and even better customer service. We help homeowners find trusted solar companies that offer no-cost solar.
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