FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. -- With the demand for solar energy doubling each year in the state, the Connecticut Green Bank has rolled out a “Go Solar” initiative, to help homeowners in Fairfield County and beyond who are looking to be more green and save money on their monthly electric bills.
“The Go Solar Program is a call to action for Connecticut to Go Solar,” said Kerry O’Neill, Connecticut Green Bank Director of Residential Programs.
Since 2011, the cost of solar energy has decreased by 17 percent, according to O’Neill, making it a buyers' market. “Don’t wait, there’s no need to wait” to add solar panels to your home, she said.
To aid homeowners in their search for solar energy, the Connecticut Green Bank’s website is set up to educate potential buyers, and provide them when the resources they need from start to finish.
More than 10,000 Connecticut homeowners, including Richard and RosAnne Hubli of Wilton, have invested in solar panels.They are saving more than $1,700 per year using solar energy.
According to O’Neill, the Connecticut Green Bank works with 80 qualified installers throughout the state to take advantage of federal and state tax credits, to assure buyers are getting their units for as low a cost as possible.
On average, the total system cost of a 7 kilowatt system will run a homeowner some $30,722, according to gosolarct.com . However, by taking advantage of a Connecticut Green Bank RSIP incentive and a 30 percent federal investment tax cut, the average price of a 7 kilowatt unit drops to just $18,197.
O’Neill said the average homeowner will spend about $95 a month on their leased solar panels, which can help save about 70 percent on annual electric costs. That means “you come out on top from day one,” she said.
Homeowners considering such a large purchase will be wary of low sunlight seasons, and after this past winter, snow coverage hampering sunlight exposure. These issues are addressed through installers, O’Neill said, who take into account a number of factors including the size of your home, its exposure to the sun, and slope of your roof to determine your yearly production.
For techies concerned their solar panels will soon be outdated, O’Neill said not to fret.
“While costs of solar panels has dropped, technology is very stable,” she said. The average life expectancy of equipment is up around 25 years.
For more information on the Go Solar initiative -- which offers two free lease payments and no interest for your first six months if you sign up by March 31 -- click here .
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