Considering solar for your business? The 30% Federal Solar tax credit has been extended! Increasing solar installations is a priority for Hayward's City Council and staff is here to help.
What is the solar capacity of your roof?
- Google has released a new tool, Project Sunroof, which allows business in the Bay Area to look up their building’s capacity and how much money they can save with a solar rooftop, and directs businesses to companies that can help install solar panels.
- East Bay Energy Watch’s Smart Solar team provides free assistance for planning a solar hot water or solar photovoltaic system, selecting a contractor, and financing.
How much will solar cost?
- The US Department of Energy developed this Solar Estimate Calculator to help you see how much solar panels should cost before you speak to installers.
- Smart Solar and Energy Sage have teamed up to provide businesses with the SmartSolar Marketplace, a resource that provides instant online quotes from a variety of pre-screened solar installers. The tool allows you to compare offers side by side to find the best installer for you.
Financing & Incentives
It can be overwhelming to figure out how to pay for such an important investment as a solar system. Here are some options:
- Property assessed clean energy (PACE) - PACE Financing in Hayward allows property owners to secure a loan through the private market and repay the project cost through their property tax bill.
- Solar Leases and PPAs - You can opt for a third-party model know as a solar lease or power purchase agreement (PPA), in which a private entity owns the equipment and you pay a monthly fee for the use of it (lease) or you pay a set price for the electricity generated by your solar system (PPA). This model is designed to require little to no upfront cost and allow you to pay less for your solar power than you would pay to PG&E (new monthly bill + monthly solar payment < old monthly bill).
- Cash Purchase - You can buy the system outright, which requires upfront capital. The benefit of this option is no monthly payments and free electricity for the 25+ year life of system. As the system owner, you are responsible for system maintenance or you can hire someone to service the system when necessary.
- Incentives - The Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE) is a comprehensive resource on U.S. renewable energy and energy efficiency incentives and policies. Learn about the Business Renewable Energy Tax Credit of 30% for solar photovoltaic and solar thermal systems, wind turbines, and fuel cells.
Solar and Renewables with PG&E: PG&E provides resources to customers regarding the steps to installing a solar system.
Go Solar California: The California Energy Commission and the California Public Utilities Commission have joined efforts to create Go Solar California, a program to encourage Californians to install 3,000 megawatts of solar energy systems by the end of 2016. The program also aims to install 585 million therms of gas-displacing solar hot water systems by the end of 2017.
California Solar Statistics: View information on the total number of solar PV systems installed under the CSI program from 2007 to present by utility, county, city, zip code, customer type, and installation size.
Solar Energy Industries Association: Check out the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) 2015 Solar Means Business report, where you can find a summary of the cost and energy savings of the 1,686 commercial solar systems around the country.
The Open PV Project: The Open PV Project, sponsored by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), is a collaborative effort between government, industry, and the public that is compiling a comprehensive database of photovoltaic (PV) installation data for the United States.