Solar installations keep getting more and more affordable! According to a report from Ernst and Young, the price of solar panels could fall to as low as $1 by 2013. This is$0.50 less than the current cost, which means solar energy could be half as expensive in just two years!
In addition to drops in prices, you can also greatly reduce theamount of time you spend researching solar installers, panels, etc. Anew business has formed: solar energy brokering! It was only a matter of time before the need for these middle men wasrecognized. Unfortunately, this broker process is not available yet inIllinois.
“A solar broker makes the whole process easier, operating likeindependent insurance agents who educate customers about coverages andhelp them to identify their particular needs. Solar brokers can alsoassist with obtaining rebates and incentives. The solar broker acting as an independent agent is an alternative to a direct-sell company thatmarkets and sells directly to the end-customer.” While the consumershould always remain knowledgeable about renewable energy andinstallations, having one main contact to guide you through the processcould relieve some headaches.
Another option is to lease solar panels! Yes, this is another new business venture, in which homeowners are able to lease rooftop panels undefined some with no upfront costs undefinedand pay only for the power produced. At least four largeCalifornia-based companies offer such leases, in which they install,maintain and continue to own the panels. One company, SunRun,headquartered in San Francisco, doubled its number of leases undefinedto 10,000 undefined in one year and expects to add 12,000 new ones thisyear. Unfortunately, this leasing option is only offered in a fewcities, where there are financial incentives and high utility rates. As solar energy expands, though, we can expect to see this spread toIllinois.
With new solar business ideas emerging, and a decrease in solar panel prices, what is stopping you from investing in solar? If you want tolearn more about solar power for your home or business, check out one ofISEA’s courses! Be sure to stay up-to-date on this growing renewable energy market; follow us on Facebook and Twitter!