Solar panel companies in California are put to the test with the state’s 2020 solar mandate
When the new year starts on January 1st, 2020, the state of California requires all new single-family and multifamily homes under three stories to include solar energy. The initiative is part of the state’s plan to reach its climate change goals. The idea is straight forward from an environmental and financial standpoint – and the majority of Californians are supportive of the mandate – but it introduces some potential complications when it comes to how home building contractors and the best solar installers can work together on this new mandate in a way that benefits both parties – as well as the families who will buy those homes.
The mandate that all new single-family and multifamily homes in California must include solar panels is a way for the Golden State to do its part in the fight against climate change. And it is happening at a time where it has become increasingly popular among Californian homeowners to buy solar panels for their houses.
Are solar panels worth it?
For any family in California that spends more than $100 on their utility bills a month, buying solar panels is a good investment as it will significantly reduce the monthly energy expenses. And when it comes to new homeowners, the math makes sense as well. According to The California Energy Commission (CEC), the new solar mandate will increase the price of a home by almost $10,000 – money that is added to the homeowners’ mortgage. However, the savings on utility bills that solar panels ensure are expected to exceed the extra cost and put more money into the pockets of the homeowners as their rate for utility continues to increase year after year
But how does this new price-increase affect building contractors and solar installers?
Solar panel companies in California are installing 15,000 solar systems every year. Next year, however, more than 74,000 new homes are being built – and almost all of them will have solar panels on them. The change means that building contractors have to calculate with this new feature as well as the price increase – and solar companies in California may have to get used to customers paying for their solar system in different ways since financing and leasing will become much more complicated when having another construction company involved in the process.
In order for this partnership to work smoothly for both solar installers and building contractors, the quality and experience of the solar companies will be a crucial factor. This is due to the fact that the responsibility of the quality of the home falls on the contractor – which means building contractors will be looking for solar partners they can trust.
To be successful in this new era of solar energy in California, a solar panel company has to have experience with working with building contractors, have knowledge of California building code and know everything there is to know about the Title 24 requirements. As a future homeowner or a building contractor, it is important to take into consideration how long the solar company has been in business, how many residential solar projects the company has successfully carried out – and not least, what their experience is in integrating a solar component into a new building project.
Looking forward to a state powered by solar energy
Solar Optimum is a well-known leader in the solar industry. Sales Director at Solar Optimum, Mark Howe, is optimistic about the upcoming solar mandate and feel confident about the new era in solar energy in California:
“With over 10 years of experience, we are well equipped to handle multi-dwelling installations,” said Howe. “We look forward to and encourage any and all opportunities to work with small and large builders in the endeavor to support the 2020 initiative.”