Incorporating solar into a new home’s design allows homeowners to immediately take advantage of financial and environmental benefits without having to retrofit the home later on. This year, many home builders, developers, architects and even realtors started to pay more attention to solar. SEIA just released a guide to help consumers and real estate professionals value residential solar systems.
Solar is similar to a microwave. Decades ago, the microwave did not come standard in new homes, but today it’s difficult to find a home without one. At first, consumers didn’t know what to expect with the microwave, but after years of the appliance proving its ability to safely reheat and cook food, most people embraced it.
Solar is going through a similar vetting process. Many consumers are still unsure about how solar works, but we believe that one day we can expect solar to come standard on all homes. Some cities are already mandating solar on new construction.
Builders, developers, architects and realtors are eager to learn about this new industry, so the Wilmington Cape Fear Home Builders Association in North Carolina hosted a “Solar Ready 101” session for its members led by Cape Fear Solar Systems. Cape Fear Solar has worked with more than 100 builders to install solar systems.
Several local builders attended to learn more about incorporating solar for new construction customers. During the presentation, Cape Fear Solar’s president John Donoghue educated attendees on the reasons consumers go solar, how to incorporate solar systems into new construction, the current solar economics and Cape Fear Solar’s process of working with builders.
Many builders partner with solar contractors to “solar-ready” a home. This means all the solar wiring is completed during construction and wires are concealed in the home’s walls. Getting a home ready for solar does not interrupt the build schedule and makes it easy to add panels after construction.
Realtors attended to learn more about solar home values and how to market a solar home. According to a National Renewable Energy Laboratory study, solar homes appreciate 17% more and sell 20% faster. Solar is proving to be a solid investment for homeowners.
Keeping solar in mind at each stage of the building process can ensure homeowners have the option to add a profitable solar system if they choose to. Factors like available roof space, roof tilt and shade can enhance a home’s ability to produce energy from the sun. Understanding how to incorporate solar, in addition to working with a reputable solar installation company, will help customers get the best possible design solutions to support their energy goals.
Solar is a proven technology that is being adopted around the globe. With the cost of electricity rising in states like North Carolina, it makes sense to install solar, especially on a new-construction home.