If you’re looking for a way to slice down your energy bills and decrease your carbon footprint, solar is the solution for you. Making the decision to implement solar energy is an exciting one, and probably something you want to get started on right away. But before you pick up the phone, make sure you’ve reviewed all of the options and possible setbacks. Here are a few steps that will help you ensure that you don’t miss anything as you move forward. Head over to Modernize for more inspiration on implementing solar in your home.
Make Sure Your Home is a Good Candidate for Solar
Solar is becoming a more prevalent and efficient solution for homeowners all over the world. But not every house is made to support a solar energy system. The qualifications may not be what you think they are—you don’t have to live in an area that is cloudless and sunny for most of the year. In fact, solar cells can collect heat and light to convert to energy even when it’s gloomy outside. However, if your roof isn’t big enough, there’s no south-facing roof surface, the yard is too shady, or you live in a historical district with certain stipulations as to the positioning of solar cells, your house may not be an ideal candidate for roof-mounted panels.
Upgrade to Energy Efficient Appliances
Going solar is a great way to save money and escape rising utility costs, but it shouldn’t carry the whole burden of making your home energy efficient. A solar system working in tandem with smaller energy-saving habits and appliances will yield optimum results. Replace old, inefficient appliances with new ones that demand less of your solar system. Switch out your incandescent bulbs for the more energy efficient LEDs or CFLs. Weather strip your doors and windows to keep the warm air from escaping in the winter, and consider getting low-emissivity windows that block out a percentage of the heat without blocking out light.
Consult a Professional
In order to know what type of equipment you will need, it’s best to call a professional to do a home energy assessment. He or she can advise you on following regulations that will allow you to qualify for tax credits and helpful incentives and spot any obstacles you may have missed in installing a solar system.
Research Your Financial Options
This is a perfect time to get a residential solar system. The price of solar cells have fallen over the last decade, and your local, state and federal governments want to encourage home and business owners to switch to renewable energy—so much, in fact, that there’s currently a 30 percent federal tax credit. Other incentives can cut some of the cost off the top, making the investment that much more worth it. Many providers offer flexible financing programs, and leasing is also an option.
Call different installers to get free estimates and discuss the process of installing and using your solar system. Read customer reviews, check out the various designs each one offers, and make sure they have all the appropriate certifications and warranties for their equipment. A solar system is a big investment, and no one wants to be taken advantage of. In the end, you need to choose a trustworthy installer and equipment that works best for your home’s particular needs.