Solar Energy

1. Great Investment

Solar can deliver better returns than many long-term investments, providing annual returns of 5%-10% each year with total returns greater than 200% over 25 years.

Let’s do the math:

Solar Return = $1,500 (annual electricity savings)/$15,000 system cost) = 10% per year.

Investing in a 5-year CD can provide returns of about 2.5% a year.

The average return for the S&P 500 over the last 25 years was 11%. Although stocks will likely provide a higher return than most solar systems, stock prices are also substantially more volatile year after year.

2. Saves Money Now

Installing a solar system on your home will dramatically lower your electricity bills right now.

Many homes drop their electric bills by 50% or more with some homeowners actually eliminating their electricity expenses all together.

An average American household will use 920 kWh per month. SolarWorld’s average installation is 4 kW which can generate 840 kWh per month.

The amount you can save depends on your electricity requirements and the direction and size of your roof. If you have a yard that can accommodate a ground mounted system, larger systems can typically be accommodated.

3. Protects you from rising energy costs

Electricity costs are constantly increasing. Over the last 5 years, they have risen over 21.2%.

On average, over the last 10 years, electricity rates have increased 3.5% every year. In 2006, rates spiked 10.3% in just that year alone.

As fossil fuel supplies continue to be tapped, the supply will become scarce and energy costs will continue to rise.

Once you have installed a solar system your effective electricity costs are locked-in, thereby protecting you from escalating future utility expenses.

4. Reduces your carbon footprint

Solar reaps the same benefits as planting thousands of trees.

The average American household generates 7.4 tons of CO2 per year just through their use of electricity. Most electricity in America is generated by burning coal and oil. This equates to 185 tons of CO2 over 25 years – which is the guaranteed performance of SolarWorld solar panels.

A 4 kW solar installation can generate 73% of an average household’s electricity needs, therefore, preventing 135 tons of CO2 from entering the environment. This is equivalent to planting 5,600 trees since each tree absorbs approximately 48 lbs of CO2. Carbon Dioxide creates global warming which is dramatically affecting our climate causing glacier loss, shoreline erosion, and endangering many animals around the world.

5. Conserves our natural resources

Each hour enough sunlight hits the earth to power the world for year.

That’s 400 trillion gigawatts per second and enough to power 400 quintillion homes.

Putting the sun to work reduces the amount of coal and nuclear energy needed to power your home which helps preserve the earth’s supply of non-renewable resources.

Coal and nuclear energy production consume vast amounts of water. Consequently, solar on your home can conserve over 16,000 gallons of water per year

6. Energy Independence

By harnessing the sun, we can reduce our reliance on foreign and non-renewable energy sources.

7. Increases Your Home Value

Studies show that solar systems can increase your home value by 20 times the annual electricity savings. In addition, homes with solar systems tend to sell faster than homes without solar- 15% faster by some studies.

8. Solar Is Affordable

Tax incentives and rebates can reduce the cost of going solar by up to 50% depending on your state and local programs. Financing options are now available in many areas to help overcome the upfront costs of going solar.

Let's do the math:

In Bakersfield, CA, you can install a 5.75 kW system at a net cost of $20,670 after rebates. Your payback period would be just 5-6 years and a compound annual growth rate of 9%. And depending on the weather conditions during the month, you could save up to 78% off your electric bill.