Tag Archives: Financial Benefits / ROI

Key metrics for comparing solar panels: PTC solar, STC rating and temperature coefficient

So you’ve made the decision to go solar. Well done! If designed right, a solar power system is a great, long-term investment with both financial and environmental benefits.

Choosing the right solar panels is one of the most important steps in designing your solar power system. There are hundreds of options, and while all panels are designed for one purpose – to convert sunlight directly into electricity, not all panels are created equal. Different solar cell technologies and the quality of manufacturing can impact the performance of ysolar panel quality and performance energysageour panels. For these reasons, comparing solar panels and finding the right one to meet your specific system needs can sometimes be a complicated task; but, it doesn’t need to be.

In this article we’ll explain important metrics like PTC power rating, STC, degradation rate, efficiency and temperature coefficient.
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How do SRECs work? Solar Renewable Energy Credits primer

Of all the incentives for installing solar panel systems, solar renewable energy certificates (SRECs) are some of the most potent, yet least-understood. You may have heard enigmatic terms like “SREC markets,” “solar renewable portfolio standards,” and “minimum compliance payments” thrown around in discussions about SRECS, but sifting through of all this jargon can be downright mind-numbing. However, SRECs can provide sizable streams of money to owners of solar power systems, so learning about what SRECs are, where they are available, and how they can make solar more financially-rewarding can, quite literally, pay off in a big way. In this article we aim to answer the simple questions: “how do SRECs work?”
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New NREL study highlights benefits of solar loans vs solar leases & PPAs

solar loan vs lease

Solar loans are gaining popularity as a solar financing option across the country. Because of the superior savings and similar benefits that solar loans promise, some industry analysts now predict that they will overtake third party-owned (TPO) solar leases and power purchase agreements (PPAs) as the dominant option for solar financing in the USA within a few years.

A new report from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) examines this phenomenon and sheds more light on the possible advantages of financing your solar system with a loan as opposed to TPO solar lease / PPA.

The most important conclusion of the report is this: While going solar with either of these options is likely save you money on your electricity bills, financing your system with a solar loan could save you up to 30% more than if you go solar with a solar lease or PPA. Continue reading

Will joining a community solar garden save you money – or foster ‘community’?

Community solar gardens

Don’t have a roof of your own to put solar panels on? So-called community solar gardens have begun to appear in many states across the USA, promising to make it easy to go solar even if you don’t have anywhere to put your panels. ‘Community solar’ has created quite a buzz as the number of solar garden projects has grown.

But we here at EnergySage argue that participating in a solar garden only makes sense if you’re benefitting in some way: whether that be saving money on your power bill, or possibly just knowing that you’ve helped your community take a step towards energy independence.

Community solar gardens: How to go solar without a roof

EnergySage has published a number of articles on the topic of community solar power. You access them with the links below:

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Go Solar Checklist—Part 2

solar-checklist2Our Go Solar Checklist post provided you with useful information to get you ready to start shopping for your own solar power system. We’ve pulled together a short follow-up checklist below that’s aimed at helping you cross the finish line. Here are a few more things to consider: Continue reading

When Shopping for Solar Power, Time Really Is Money

If you’ve been paying attention at all, you’re probably already a believer in the financial benefits of solar power. One of the critical benefits of EnergySage is the tremendous amount of time it saves you throughout the entire proccanstockphoto9098193ess of shopping for solar power. When we talk about these financial benefits, we don’t usually assign a monetary value to the time you save using EnergySage, but as we all know, time is money. Ultimately, how you value your time affects the choices you make. Here’s an interesting analysis of how to put a dollar figure on the time EnergySage will save you. Continue reading

How to Pick a Solar Installer

solar installerOne of the most critical components to a successful solar panel system installation is, of course, choosing the right solar installer. No matter if you are in Massachusetts, New York or California, a knowledgeable and competent installer is key to achieving your financial goals. This is true not just in terms of what you will pay to install your system, but also in terms of maximizing your system’s economic benefits by installing an appropriately sized system, maximizing production levels, taking advantage of incentive and rebate programs, etc. So what should a property owner look for in an installer? Here are some of the criteria that EnergySage uses when choosing installers for our own network of pre-screened high-quality installers:  Continue reading

Net-Metering: The Back and Forth of Solar Power Systems

As the owner or lessee of a solar panel system, you are entitled to the electricity it produces free of charge. Throughout the year, though, the electricity your solar panels produce will vary—sometimes you may produce more than you need and at other times, not enough. The practice of “net-metering” helps to even out how these peaks and valleys in electricity production affect your electricity bills. Here’s how it works:  Continue reading

Party Politics Aside, Solar Power Systems Provide Something for Everyone

A recent Gallup poll determined that 2 out of 3 Americans want the U.S to put more emphasis on generating domestic energy through renewable sources—And that desire was reflected across political parties. We weren’t really surprised by these findings. When you think about it, clean energy has its perks for almost everyone regardless of their political leanings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Shopping for Solar Panel System: Don’t Just Focus on Dollars per Watt

When shopping for solar photovoltaic (also known as solar panel, solar electric) systems, many businesses and homeowners focus mainly on price. To that end, dollars per watt is a key metric when comparing quotes because it allows the consumer to adjust for differences in system size. While price is certainly an important factor, maximizing the value of your investment both financially and environmentally, involves consideration of several other, equally important factors. Here are some that we think are vital to making the right decision about your solar panel system.  Continue reading