More Than 10,000 Homeowner Participants to Date; Solar Demand in State More Than Doubling Annually; Connecticut Third in U.S. for Economic Potential of Residential Solar Systems
ROCKY HILL, Connecticut, March 3, 2015 –- More than 10,000 Connecticut homeowners have invested in solar panels to date, drastically reducing their electric bills and taking advantage of decreasing solar installation costs. The Connecticut Green Bank’s Go Solar Connecticut initiative is poised to support the rapid expansion of solar with a suite of homeowner resources, including education, qualified installers, and financing.
Residential photo voltaic (PV) solar systems are more affordable than ever, given rising electric rates, declining installation costs, and flexible financing options for both leasing and ownership. Approved Go Solar projects have saved state residents an average of more than $1,100 per household on their utility bills.* And solar systems generate “free electricity” during their 25-to-30-year life cycles.
“Residential solar is growing exponentially in Connecticut,” said Bryan Garcia, President and CEO of the Connecticut Green Bank (formerly the Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority), which directs Go Solar. “There has never been a better time to switch to solar energy. Solar demand in Connecticut is more than doubling every year, and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory recently ranked Connecticut third among states for favorable economics of going solar.”
Garcia added: “Going solar is a smart choice, particularly now with the widespread availability of financing, including no-money-down options for leasing and owning your system. Using reliable, pollution-free technology, these systems allow homeowners to take more control of their energy bills, making it easier to manage expenses over many years.”
Solar PV systems also increase property values without raising property taxes. Homes with solar panels sell twice as fast, on average, and at a premium compared with homes without solar panels.** Citing another important benefit, Garcia noted: “Installing a solar system contributes to economic development and creates jobs. Go Solar installations have created more than 2,000 jobs in the residential solar PV market in Connecticut. Converting to solar energy also helps the environment. Buildings produce about one-third of carbon emissions in the United States. Solar power can reduce a household’s carbon emissions by three to four tons a year –- the equivalent of planting more than 100 trees annually.”
“Our Go Solar program makes the move to solar energy easier and more affordable than ever,” said Kerry O’Neill, Connecticut Green Bank Director of Residential Programs. “We are very sensitive to how quickly a homeowner may become overwhelmed or confused while researching the benefits of solar. So we created a very user-friendly website for residents to learn everything they need to know at www.gosolarct.com. Not only will homeowners be able to get a better handle on the technology; they also can take advantage of attractive financing, including loans and leases, through a simple application process and attractive terms. Many of the local and regional solar contractors with whom we work also provide additional financing options.”
For even more savings, the Connecticut Green Bank is offering two free lease payments to any new customer who applies for the CT Solar Lease by March 31, 2015. O’Neill added that homeowners who go solar also have the opportunity to take advantage of additional incentives and tax credits. For an average solar installation, the incentive from the Connecticut Green Bank is 10 to 15 percent of the system’s installed cost. Factor in the federal tax credit, scheduled to expire Dec. 31, 2016, and a homeowner can enjoy a credit of 30 percent of a system’s installed cost, less the Green Bank’s incentive.
About Go Solar Connecticut
Go Solar Connecticut, available through the Connecticut Green Bank, provides state residents with easy, affordable financing options for solar photovoltaic (PV) systems for their homes. The program combines the resources of local lenders and contractors to help residents reduce their energy bills and take advantage of decreasing solar installation costs while building a clean energy future for Connecticut. Please visit www.gosolarct.com for more information, including 10 reasons to go solar, what qualifies a home for solar panels, video, a buyer’s guide, financing options, how to find a contractor, success stories and FAQs.
About The Connecticut Green Bank (formerly CEFIA)
CEFIA was established by Connecticut’s General Assembly on July 1, 2011 as a part of Public Act 11-80. This quasi-public agency, now known as the Connecticut Green Bank, superseded the former Connecticut Clean Energy Fund. The Green Bank’s mission is to lead the green bank movement by accelerating private investment in clean energy deployment within Connecticut and to achieve economic prosperity, job creation and energy security throughout the state. As the nation’s first full-scale green bank, the organization leverages public and private funds to drive investment and scale up clean energy deployment in Connecticut.
* Based on Dec. 31, 2014 Connecticut Light & Power and United Illuminating electricity rates. Actual savings will vary, depending on the installation.
** The Effects of State Policy Suites on the Development of Solar Markets. NREL/TP-7A40-62506: November 2014. D. Steward and E. Doris National Renewable Energy Laboratory. www.nrel.gov/docs/fy15osti/62506.pdf