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Solar Power for Anyone

Replacing traditional fossil fuel energy with a renewable resource is one of the best ways to limit your contribution to climate change. The global coronavirus shutdowns revealed that our changing actions can have an immediate observable impact on the environment. Switching to solar power is an excellent way to continue reducing carbon emissions and prevent harmful pollution. 

The solar industry has expanded to make clean energy accessible to more and more people and organizations. The benefits of solar energy are not limited to homeowners and business owners, even non-property owners can take advantage of the unlimited power source. Options like Solar Leasing, Power Purchase Agreements, and Community Solar, are alternative methods of accessing solar energy. 

Power Purchase Agreement

A Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) is an arrangement in which you can host and use a solar system without owning. In this situation, a third-party would own the system, acting as a solar provider, while you would pay for the electricity that it produces. This option is helpful for those who have space for a system, but may not own the property or simply aren’t able to invest in the system as a whole. 

Pros:

  • There is usually no initial investment cost; the user pays for the electricity as they would with a utility company
  • The monthly cost is consistently lower than traditional energy bills
  • Agreements typically span the same lifetime of a solar system so you can benefit without owning it for a comparable length of time

Cons:

  • Since you don’t own the system, it won’t increase property value (if you do own the property)
  • Although the cost is lower than traditional energy, changes in climate and production may cause fluctuations in your monthly bill

 

Solar Lease

A Solar Lease is very similar to a PPA because the user of the system can benefit from solar without owning the system. However, this arrangement differs in that payment is based on the access and use of the system. So instead of paying for the energy it produces, you would pay for the ability to use the system altogether (like a rental agreement). 

Pros: 

  • Just like the PPA, there is usually no initial investment cost here
  • This arrangement uses a fixed monthly fee, meaning you won’t have fluctuations in your monthly bill
  • There is often an option to extend this agreement, so you could continue using solar power without eventually purchasing the system

Cons:

  • Since you would not own the system, there is still no increase in property value
  • The consistent monthly payment also means that your bill won’t lower when energy production is lower 

 

Community Solar

Community Solar is a shared arrangement in which a community benefits together from one large solar system. This option generally applies to groups seeking to invest in a system together (neighbors that agree to split the investment) and organizations (such as apartment buildings or municipalities) seeking to generate solar for community use. In the latter setup, community members would subscribe to use the system. 

Pros: 

  • The investment cost is more manageable in a community arrangement. In a group purchase, the owners can divide the cost. In a community garden, energy subscribers contribute to the cost for an organization or housing entity
  • The power generated is accessible to renters and other members who might not be able to access solar otherwise

Cons: 

  • Group purchases would mean that multiple owners share financial responsibility and would need to agree on their shared terms
  • Both situations would require a practical location for group/community access to the power source



Plan Your Project with YellowLite

Our team continuously works on commercial and residential systems in urban, suburban, and rural settings. Reach out to one of our solar experts to learn more about how your organization or community can move forward with an investment in solar power.  

 

Call us at 216-333-1364

Email us on https://www.yellowlite.com/contact-us/


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