I’ve long been impressed with the potential of solar panels, specifically for residential use. Mrs. Guru and I are planning on purchasing a house later this year, and solar panels are definitely on my ‘to investigate’ list. We live in North Texas – we get PLENTY of direct sunlight out here, and I really think solar energy would be a great investment. However, from what I’ve gathered, it’s still prohibitively expensive for most homeowners to install solar panels on their roof, or to have them installed.
Enter the Solar PPA (power purchasing agreement). This financing option allows you to get solar panels on your home with little or no out-of-pocket costs, and still help the environment and save money, all at the same time. Here’s how it works:
You sign up with a company, who comes out and installs the solar panels on your roof. They do some in-depth analysis to determine your potential solar generating ability, and work out a deal where you purchase the power generated by these solar panels – the ones on your roof – from this company, at cheaper rates than you would pay the regular power company.
The solar company, such as SolarCity or SunRun, gets their reimbursement from you, as well as from filing for government subsidies on your behalf. After a number of years, you own the panels outright and are able to nearly eliminate your power bill, depending on your area and the like. You can read a full account at KK.org’s Cool Tools post.
Solar energy is a great example of technology enriching and enabling our real lives. It’s always around us, and can be generated without needing to bring your own fuel around. In areas of wide-open skies like Texas, it’s a brilliant way to save the environment and save some money, too. I’m really glad to see some creative pricing structures in place to help more consumers be able to benefit from solar power.