Do You Qualify for Solar Panels?

The possibilities and benefits of solar energy can be exciting. There are only a few qualifications to know about, and thousands of homeowners qualify every year. If you have ever wondered: Do I Qualify for Solar Panels? Big Dog Solar can help.

Ownership

With Big Dog Solar, purchasing a solar home system, whether with cash or with financing, means that you have complete ownership. Because of that, most lenders require that you own the home that will have the solar panels. In addition, In almost all cases, home owners are able to take more liberties with the property than home renters. This is also true for installing a solar home system.

Net Metering

One main qualification for a solar panel system is that your utility company needs to offer net metering. Most utility companies nation-wide do. Net metering allows the surplus solar energy your home collects to feed back into the electrical grid as a credit to you. That credit is especially helpful during nighttime or cloudy seasons when your home can’t harvest a surplus of solar energy.

Exposure

Not all roofs or cities are ideal for a solar panel system. Follow these steps to see how much sunlight your home receives and how much space you have for solar panels:

  1. Go to https://www.google.com/get/sunroof.
  2. Enter your home address.
  3. Look at the hours of usable sunlight per year provided. If it’s more than 1,400 hours per year, you’re likely a good candidate for a roof solar panel system. 

Don’t get discouraged if the numbers are lower than you expected. Keep in mind that Google Project Sunroof isn’t an exact science. Although it’s a good place to get started, a consultation or site survey with Big Dog Solar can give you all the exact answers to your questions.

5+ Years

Most people who purchase a solar home system choose to pay with a financing plan through a bank or other lender. We recommend that those interested in purchasing a solar home system plan on living in their home for five or more years. Owning a solar home system for about five years is the point where it will add value to your home when re-selling.

Efficiency

If your home doesn’t efficiently use electricity, it will be more difficult to save money with solar energy. The more energy your home uses per month, the larger solar panel system you’ll need to decrease your electricity bill. However, many people don’t realize they’re using more energy than necessary, due to lack of energy efficiency in their home.

Taking a few measures to increase your home’s energy efficiency can help save money on your electric bill before even installing a solar home system. Here are some things about your home to consider:

  • Windows: The higher quality, better-paneled windows help keep your temperature regulated, meaning less use of a heater and AC unit. You can also seal your windows with silicone caulk or shrink film to save energy.
  • Light bulbs: Halogen bulbs, compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs are the best options to save energy. If you are still using any 40-60-watt incandescent bulbs, consider switching to save on your bill.
  • Unplug unused chargers/appliances: Frequently called “energy vampires,” chargers that remain plugged in and unused all day can contribute to 10% of your electricity bill, along with appliances like toasters, coffee makers or even gaming systems that aren’t used throughout the day. 
  • Re-insulating your roof can help save on how much energy your home is using to stay heated.
  • Click here for more ideas.

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