OK, you really want to do right by the environment and stop using all that coal fired electricity. The problem is you don’t have an extra ten to twenty thousand lying around the house to buy a photovoltaic (PV) system, or if you do, you’ve had your eye on that new diamond encrusted turnip twaddler that the Johnsons just bought. Sound familiar? Sure it does, and who among us doesn’t want a diamond encrusted turnip twaddler? (The ruby ones can be so frustrating right?)
Well let me tell you about my friend Phu. Phu is the way cool principal of a local high school and is married to a way awesome woman named Melanie who’s an English teacher at the same school. They’re wicked smart! Now we all know that teachers are among the highest paid professionals on the planet (aren’t they?) so Phu and his missus should be able to buy a photovoltaic system, pop it on their roof, and cut out the coal without having to even think about it. Well, maybe in the world I’ve created in my mind, but in the real world, Phu is in the same boat as most of us and can’t throw down the benjamins for a full system (plus they have a baby on the way, so its not exactly squander time if you know what I mean).
So Phu and Mel sat down, crunched some numbers, and did some research. One option was to pay a lot to put a system on the house and kick their coal habit, and another option was to pay nothing to put a system on the house and kick their coal habit. Guess which one way they chose (remember, I said they were wicked smart).
Welcome to the world of solar leasing. For those of us who can’t afford to plunk down the bucks to purchase a system outright, solar leasing offers not only a great alternative, but an alternative that anyone would be insane to pass up. Here’s how it works.
Step 1. You decided to go solar and pat yourself on the back (go ahead, I’ll wait).
Step 2. You contact a company that leases systems like SolarCity (presently working in California, Arizona, Oregon, Texas, Colorado and soon beyond) and ask them to see if your house is a good fit solar wise.
Step 3. If you are a good candidate, you sign a bunch of papers, and they come and put a brand spankin new photovoltaic system on your house at no cost to you. It’s wirelessly monitored so you can check it remotely to see how many electrons your churning out, and comes with a full warranty. You pay them a set monthly fee–which is usually lower than your current electric bill–that will stay the same for the life of the lease (energy bills usually rise by an average of 5 percent a year).
Step 4. You enjoy a really goofy smile as you turn on your lights.
So to recap, pay nothing up front, get a system installed on your roof, pay a monthly set fee that is usually less than you’d be paying anyway, and kick big coal in the…(well you know). Breaking it down even simpler don’t crack your wallet, cut your monthly expenses, decrease your impact on the planet, and one up your neighbors (the last one is up to you). Cool huh?
Now of course there are all sorts of other pieces of info you should explore before jumping on the bandwagon, but with the help of their solar calculator, and the FAQs they have listed here, you should be able to start moving down the solar electron highway.
I should point out that there are other companies that lease solar like Renu that you should look into as well, I just mentioned Solar City because I know about them firsthand. If you know of another company that’s leasing solar, let us know about them, and if solar leasing isn’t available where you are, contact one of these companies and let them know you want them to set up shop. The greater the market, the sooner they’ll come.
So join Phu and Melanie and harness the power of the sun for (relatively) free!!