Do I Qualify for Solar in Nevada?
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Reno residents may want solar on their rooftops, but that doesn’t mean they can get the product in a viable way. After all, solar panels aren’t potato chips. To acquire a solar array, you and your home need to meet certain standards.
What Makes Reno, Nevada Perfect for Solar Energy?
Not every location is a good fit for solar. Global horizontal irradiance is the total shortwave radiation that an area receives. It’s a determining factor in whether a spot is good for solar power.
In the United States, you can get anywhere from 1-7 kWh of global horizontal irradiance per day per square meter. Reno’s global horizontal irradiance is 5.3 kWh/m2/day. The high for Nevada is 5.9 kWh/m2/day.
Knowing your location is a good spot for solar is the first qualifier. Now you need to decide if your home is a good fit and whether solar fits into your financing model.
Qualifying for Your Nevada Solar Installation
Before obtaining a solar quote, the solar installer needs to know your annual energy usage. You will also need your roof assessed before you can make your purchase.
Usage for an Average Reno Nevada Residential Installation
Usage is the amount of electricity used. The average Reno home in 2016 used about 11,846 kWh of electricity per year, equaling about 900 kWh or 96 dollars per month.
Most solar companies have a minimum system size that they install. The minimum system size balances keeping the company in business and benefiting the customer.
Go Solar Group has concluded that homes that use at least 6,000 kWh of energy per year meet this balance. This annual usage equals about 500 kWh per month. If the electric company charges 11 cents per watt, the monthly bill should average 55 dollars.
Solar Installation Roof Qualifications for Reno Residents
Having a good roof with enough space and sunlight is essential. If you don’t have space and light, and there isn’t a way to create it, your home won’t be a good fit.
Another factor that goes into qualifying for a solar array is the age of your roof. The average lifespan of roofing material can range anywhere from 5-100 years.
Before installing a PV system, the home needs a roof inspection. Having a professional look at your roof to see if it is safe to install heavy equipment is essential. They will assess the shading of your roof and decide if you have enough space facing the right direction.
Reno Solar Financing Requirements
Because most individuals can’t afford to pay in cash, they either get a loan or lease a solar array. Go Solar Group has found that if you don’t have the option to pay in cash, a loan is the best route to take.
Credit Requirements for Solar Loans in Nevada
In 2015, credit.com quoted Alex Valdez, a Colorado solar CEO. Valdez stated that as of 2015, most solar loans on a scale of 300 to 850 require a credit score of 660 or higher.
You should be fine if you have a score of 700 or above. However, those with credit between 660 and 700 still find solar worth considering.
If your credit is higher, you are also more likely to qualify for a lower interest rate. As with any loan, your debt to income ratio will be the final judge. You may have excellent credit but be denied the loan because of large unpaid purchases.
Reno NV Home Ownership: A Stipulation for Residential Solar
Homeownership is necessary for residential solar installs. If you do not own your home, the homeowner needs to make the purchase. If you are renting, talk to your landlord about looking into solar. If your landlord doesn’t pay the utility bill, they may not see the benefit at first. Letting your landlord know the mutual benefits of solar will help your case.