A bold statement. But there’s a big problem.
Anyone can make the above claims – from amateur installers all the way up to well-established contractors.
Clearly, asking someone to rate his or her own expertise is not a good strategy. Every solar installer in the County will say the same thing, “Of course we’re the best.”
So how do you choose a quality photovoltaic (PV) installer for your property? Equally important, how do you define such a subjective term as “best?”
Let’s take a look.
Choosing the Best Solar Installer Based on Price
The easiest and most popular method for choosing a reputable installer is to focus on price.
And this approach makes perfect sense – especially if (like most Americans) you believe solar power is expensive.
And yet, 97% of respondents in a highly publicized survey overestimated the true cost of going solar. Some estimates were $20,000 above the actual price. And that was 2 years ago. Solar prices have come down even further since this 2012 survey began making headlines.
$20,000 too high. If that’s your starting point, then of course you’d be focused on price. But we’ve got really good news. In fact, we have 3 pieces of good news.
That works out to $250 a year (which is less than what many homeowners pay in a single month for grid electricity at today’s prices).
2. We make solar even more affordable. At Sunline Energy, we help you apply for local, state, and federal incentives to help bring the cost of your installation down.
We also help you apply for low interest financing.
And lastly, we help you implement energy efficiency strategies to reduce the number of panels required to cover your electricity needs. Fewer panels = lower cost.
To read some simple energy efficiency tips, check out these 2 articles:
3. Solar installation price is irrelevant. It’s true. Solar is an investment that continues to pay handsome dividends for decades. In fact, you’ll likely earn better returns with a subpar solar installation than you will on Wall Street. This is true even if you pay exorbitant fees to install your solar PV system.
It’s a bit counterintuitive.
How can price be unimportant? But it’s true. What you really want to focus on is the payback period – i.e. how quickly your system pays for itself through clean electricity savings.
For more on why costs are irrelevant, be sure to check out How Important Is Price When Shopping for a Solar Installation?.
So If Price Is Irrelevant, How Do You Choose the Best Solar Company?
Don’t worry. We’re not finished. Not by a long shot.
In Part 2 of “Best Solar Installers,” we’ll dig deeper into the different requirements and criteria by which customers often rate contractors. Some qualifications are important. Others (like price) are popular but not such a big deal.
Stay tuned for the next installment. And if you have questions about installing solar panels on your own property, contact us today for a free quote.