A steadily growing number of homeowners is deciding to go solar, as having their own rooftop installation allows them to produce their own energy – partly or even entirely. Meanwhile, the costs for solar power are sinking, hence making a complete payback of an investment in as little as five years possible. All of these reasons, and more, prove that going solar is definitely worthwile considering. If you have indeed chosen to invest in your own installation, we have collected a few tips worth considering before and throughout the process.
1. Collecting offers
Contact different contractors and collect at least four offers to compare. Their recommendations, configurations and installation sizes may vary, hence you will have to compare them carefully.
2. Finding the right inverter
There is a variety of inverters on the market and the choice is not an easy one. Whether to get a more expensive or a more affordable inverter should be thought through well. Smart inverters will soon be having a strong impact on the market, so it is definitely an option to choose a cheaper model for now and replace it with a smart inverter in the near future. The latter offer the advantage of utility time-of-use or dynamic pricing rate plans. Do keep in mind that micro-inverters might make it harder from you to benefit from competitive rate plans.
3. Determining the perfect size
First of all you need to estimate your household’s current average energy consumption. Your installation should cover at least that – any additional energy can be fed into the grid. Should you consider getting an electric car in the near future, you might want to ensure that your PV installation provides the energy for this as well to maximize the cost-effectiveness of your installation.
4. Does your roof need re-doing?
Before you start setting up your solar installation, take a good look at the state of your roof. If this might need re-doing or renovating soon, it might be a good idea to get this done before setting up the installation, as removing and re-installing it can be a costly matter. It might add up to as much as 50% of the original price! As PV contractors usually ensure that the contract makes you responsible for any roof-related costs, we recommend you make sure that you won’t have to face any unpleasant surprises.
5. Have a look into leasing
If you are planning on living in your home for just a limited period, leasing a PV installation can be an uncomplicated way of reducing your energy bills. However, if you will live there for an extended period of time, that is about the next decade or more, it is recommendable to invest in your own solar installation, as this way you can ensure that you get to enjoy from the major financial benefits of owning an installation.
6. Saving energy is still important!
Even though you are now the proud owner of a solar installation, is does not mean that energy comes to you for free. Instead, continue using it economically, as all the energy you do not use yourself can be fed into the grid as an additional income. Thus you might want to conduct an energy efficiency audit of your home to see where and how your energy consumption can be reduced. This will also help you defining the best size for your installation.
Congratulations on the step of looking into getting your own installation! With these tips in mind, we are sure you will be able to benefit from it soon.
Title image: noppasit TH/Shutterstock