Houston solar equity projects
Low-income families tend to put a larger percentage of their income to paying their energy bills. This is called “energy burden” That’s why Solar United neighbors is working in Houston to give them the power to lower their energy bills with solar.
The Northeast Houston Solar Equity Project
The Northeast Houston Solar Equity Project began in 2022. Solar United Neighbors launched it in partnership with local organizations West Street Recovery (WSR) and Launch Point CDC. The first phase of the project aims to provide 20 free 5 kW solar arrays over two years to households in Northeast Houston who are low-income and experience a high energy burden.
The goal is to help community members in Northeast Houston who would not otherwise be able to install solar on their roof. Putting more solar on rooftops in Northeast Houston is a direct investment in the community. It helps families save on their energy bills, provides energy stability, and improves air quality. And, when paired with battery storage, solar can keep the lights on when the storm hits. Through this project, SUN is also learning more about the obstacles that low-income families face in accessing solar. We hope to use that knowledge to get rid of those obstacles in Northeast Houston and other communities.
Homes for this year’s project will be selected by the community through West Street Recovery. The project is made possible by a grant Solar United Neighbors (SUN) received from the Hive Fund and incentive funds from CenterPoint. Funds are limited to 10 homes this year. The funding available is for a 5 kW solar system.
Meet a past participant
- Doris Brown, 2023 NE Houston Equity Project participant, Hub Home and neighborhood captain
How the project works
If you participate in this program, you will receive direct communications from Solar United Neighbors via email, phone calls, and in-person meetings. We’ll walk you through the process, qualifications, and answer your questions.
- Your income cannot be greater than a certain amount depending on the size of your household. Your household income must be no greater than 200% of federal poverty guidelines or your home must be located in a qualifying census tract. No documentation of your income will be necessary, but you will need to fill out a verification form from CenterPoint.
- A roof suitable for solar (SUN will do a virtual rooftop assessment)
- Must be located in NE Houston
Your solar will be installed by the installation company selected through SUN’s Houston group buying program. You will also need to sign a Participant Agreement form. You will have the opportunity to meet with the installer and ask questions. SUN will also provide one-to-one installer neutral guidance throughout the process. If you are comfortable moving forward, you will then sign an installer contract.
The solar arrays for the NE Houston project will be paid for by SUN, thanks to the Hive Fund grant and CenterPoint rebates. The grant will also cover minor roof repairs as needed.
Learn more on our “myth busters” page.
Reach out to us at TXteam@solarunitedneighbors.org.