Solar United Neighbors gave me the opportunity to learn and to purchase without pressure.
Greg – Montverde, FL
System Size: 9 kW
Why did you decide to go solar?
I have wanted to go solar since the early 2000s. It was so expensive then. $80k for what I needed. I waited and waited. Saw it go to $50k and then, a few years later, I saw an ad for Solar United Neigbors. I went to learn and then I found out prices were in the right range.
Did anything surprise you about the process of going solar?
For the whole installation process, it was like being a little kid waiting to open the Christmas presents. Wait, wait, wait. And then…I was devastated. The whole time I wanted to wwatch the spinning dial in the electric meter spin backwards, when the solar was finally hooked up. What, an electronic meter? Drat.
Why did you choose to go solar with Solar United Neighbors?
I joined in 2017 and there wasn’t enough information out…particularly the bad misinformed information that you see today on every social media. I’m a scientist by training and want to learn rather than “be told.” Solar United Neighbors gave me the opportunity to learn and to purchase without pressure.
What benefits did you experience going solar with a co-op?
I actually joined a second co-op to learn even more. I didn’t know what I didn’t know the first time around, and wanted to pursue an opportunity of having electricity when the grid was turned off. Did I miss something during the first go-round? Also, never purchased batteries. “Was it more economical to buy batteries the second time around”? I had made good choices for myself. No and no on the upgrades.
Do you have any data about your solar system performance? What electricity savings have you seen since going solar?
As I mentioned before, I’m a scientist by training, and I’m still learning about how to evaluate net metering. I have never been able to measure the monthly savings directly for my system. I have all I need to know about how much I’ve produced, but I can’t reconcile that with the numbers that Duke energy supplies in my bill. All I can do is estimate current billings vs prior. That’s not a great number because it doesn’t include the fuel surcharges I’ve never experienced. I did learn how to read my meter, but haven’t used the data to calculate the average monthly savings. The meter shows total electricity used vs the total I’ve provided (I think). I could use the difference between the two and divide by 60 months (I think).
What advice would you give to someone considering going solar?
I consistently post on Facebook whenever I see a post to buy solar. I tell everyone to ask for a share in the bird dog fee. I tell everyone not to believe anything they see on Facebook and then I always post the solar united URL and tell everyone to go there to learn before they begin to buy. I’ve already emailed two neighbors about the Orange County co-op.