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-System size: 11 kW
-Equipment: LG solar panels with Enphase inverters
-Average utility bill savings after solar: $2,500
The Williams family have lived in Florence for the past eleven years. Robert and his wife Sarah moved to the area when they found work in two of the area's colleges. Florence was also a great place to raise kids and they were expecting their second child which made the small town even more appealing.
Two years ago, Robert noticed solar installers on his neighbors roof. Steve, Rob’s neighbor, told him about Northeast Solar and urged him to call.
“I knew solar was good for the environment, but Steve told me about all the savings and incentives. That really got me thinking,” Robert said.
Rob and Sarah had always cared about the environment, so solar seemed like a good direction to go. They decided to make the call the next day.
The initial consultation.
Sarah called Northeast Solar the following day and talked to Tom, one of our solar consultants. The initial discussion was casual but informative. Tom asked about the property, where it was located, and about the families energy consumption habits. It turned out the Williams had a great site for solar. Sarah learned a lot about how solar worked. She also learned about the solar incentives Steve was talking about including the 26% federal tax credit, the $1,000 state incentive, and the ten year SMART solar incentive.
Site assessment and system design.
After the call, Tom got busy conducting a virtual assessment by compiling utility bill information, property data, and the families energy usage. He passed that info over to Justin, our in-house solar design expert. Justin used the most up to date software to create a solar array to exceed the Williamses’ expectations. Among other technical details, Justin considered price, aesthetics, and product choice for Rob and Sarah who wanted to offset their energy bill by at least fifty percent. Rob wanted to buy an electric car the following year, so Justin designed the system to accommodate an electric vehicle charging station in the future.
“The time Tom spent with us helped clarify the process and the technology. I was also impressed by how easy it was to plan for future energy use. I told Tom I wanted an electric car, and he made it happen,” Robert said.
After Justin completed the design, Tom scheduled a time to go over the finer details of the proposal and the design with Rob and Sarah. Together, they discussed product selection, racking components, cost, payback period, and the various financing options.
After discussing the system and all of the benefits, Rob and Sarah decided to move forward. Once in the solar installation que, Tom worked with the Williamses’ on town paperwork and utility applications.
“Tom was so helpful. He walked us through everything," Sarah told me. "We have two kids and don’t have much time, but he made sure everything moved along seamlessly.”
Working for the Williamses’ behind the scenes.
It generally takes between 1-3 months before installation can proceed. This is due to utility company applications and permitting issues. Tom worked behind the scenes for the Williamses’ and updated them anytime progress was made. With about a month to go before install, Sarah wanted an update.
“I was curious about the timeline and called Tom. He was very helpful and assured me that everything was moving along according to schedule."
After all the permits were in place, Phil, our installation supervisor, put Rob and Sarah on the install schedule while Tom began to coordinate the solar panel delivery with them. A typical solar installation takes about five days to complete. Tom made sure the family knew when to expect the install team and how long they expected everything to take.
Inspection and activation.
The Williamses’ new solar array was inspected about two weeks after installation. After receiving the green light from building authorities, Tom consulted with Rob and Sarah and sent them easy activation instructions. With the flip of a switch, the Williams family began generating solar power! Tom also walked them through a simple to use monitoring app that lets them keep track of their system from their smartphones.
Robert said, “Between the savings, the green aspects of solar, and the time Tom took with us, I couldn’t imagine a smoother transition to solar.”
Soaking up the Sun and sharing it with the neighbors.
The Williams family now generates clean, renewable energy that powers their home year round. Robert just added the charging station for his new Chevy Bolt, and they have started exploring solar backup batteries. Robert has even convinced a neighbor across the street to go solar last month. They are scheduled to be installed early this spring!
“I signed up for the referral program and was paid when the family across the street went solar with Northeast.”