Residential Solarize Program

Have you ever thought about installing solar panels on your home, farm, or small business? Now is the time to find out if solar is right for you. The Solar Workgroup has launched the Solarize Southwest Virginia program to make going solar simple and affordable. Sign up here for a free solar site assessment.  More information below.

Residential Solar Installers:

What is solarize?

Solarize is a way for a community to learn more about solar and reduce the cost of solar installations.

Through the Solarize SWVA program, the Workgroup will choose a solar developer to perform all the solar installations for the people who buy solar systems during the period of the program. The installer is able to offer lower prices because they can get bulk purchase discounts on materials and solar equipment. The Solarize program also helps the solar company save money on marketing and advertising, so they can reduce prices for the customers. 

The phases of the Solarize program include:

  1.  Sign-up period: Register in the program with the form above to have a free, no-obligation solar home evaluation. This will allow you to find out what kind of system you could install and how large, and what you can expect to save without obligation to sign an installation contract.
  2. Info meetings and education: Attend one of a series of meetings that will cover topics like financing, system maintenance, solar system options, taxes, and regulations.
  3. Contracts and installations: If you decide you want solar panels on your home, you will discuss the specifics with the installer, sign a contract, and begin the installation process. The experts that are part of the Workgroup will be available to you to answer any questions you might have.

How does it save money?

By doing several installations in one area at a time, installers are able to make bulk purchases and offer discounts on materials, solar equipment, and installation costs. The solar company also saves money on marketing, advertising, and customer consultations. Because of this, Solarize programs save thousands of dollars for participants.

How do I know if solar will work on my property?

The best locations for solar panels on your roof are south, east, or west-facing slopes in direct sunlight with no shading. Solar arrays can be installed on metal roofs or traditional shingles. New and old roofs are both suitable. If your roof needs to be replaced within ten years, you may want to have repairs/replacements done before installing solar. Solar systems can also be mounted on the ground.

Do I need to have batteries? Most solar systems connect to the electric grid, thus do not require a battery. At Solarize meetings, local solar retailers will talk about the equipment options. If you sign up, a contractor will help you design a solar system to meet your personal energy needs and your budget.

I’m not sure how to pay for a solar system.

Solarize is all about making it easy and affordable to go solar. In addition to lowering costs through bulk-purchasing discounts, the Workgroup will collaborate with local banks and credit unions to find sensible financing options for you and to help understand financial incentives like the Solar Investment Tax Credit.

Why Solarize?

There is safety in numbers. Going solar with your community means you will get a licensed, insured, reputable installer offering you the best price without doing all the research on your own. Community meetings on a variety of topics help present all the information before you sign a contract so you can make an informed educated decision.

Solarize meetings are also a no-obligation, no pressure opportunity to talk to installers and solar system owners. The participants go through the process at the same time, but it’s not a co-op so your system isn’t tied to anyone else’s. You sign your own contract with your own specifications.

For additional information, contact Austin Counts at austin@appvoices.org or at (276) 679-1691.