How to Choose the Best Solar System for Your Home

choose best solar system

Want to power your home with solar energy – but don’t know what system to get or how much money you should spend? Big Green Purse can help you decide!

We’re partnering with MyDomino, an energy savings concierge service that can help you choose the best solar system for your home. And neither their service nor ours will cost you a dime.

Here’s the 4-step process MyDomino recommends to help you go solar, “ditch fossil fuels, and save money at the same time.”

How to Choose the Best Solar System for Your Home

√ Compare solar installers.

√ Compare equipment and services.

√ Compare cost proposals.

√ Compare financing.

solar panels 20-30% off1) Compare solar installers.

When you buy any appliance for your home, what do you do? Talk to your neighbors and friends about what they bought? Compare reviews on Consumer Reports or other websites? Go shopping and look at different models and brands yourself?

Those are all good – but they’re also very time consuming, and they may not give you the nuts-and-bolts comparisons you really need.

choose solar systemWhat I like about MyDomino is that they’ve already vetted many installers and can help you find one that best meets your needs. But the company will help you evaluate any proposal you get from a solar company, whether they’re a MyDomino partner or not.

They’ll also tell you honestly if solar might not be your best option.

2) Compare equipment and services.

As it turns out, the big decision may not concern the kind of solar panels you get.

What’s more important is to focus on something called an inverter.

That’s the device that converts the sun’s rays into power your home can use.

There are three kinds of inverters:

String inverters have traditionally been the cheapest, but prices are now leveling out. These are not as shade-tolerant and don’t let you monitor each panel’s performance, so they’re best if your roof has full sun all day.

Microinverters are a good option if you have any shading. If one or two panels are shaded at any time, the rest of your panels will still keep producing. Most microinverters allow panel-level monitoring.

Optimizers function a lot like microinverters and are sometimes cheaper.

choose solar systemMyDomino can help you figure out what your best choice is for the system you’re getting.

 

3) Compare cost proposals.

With any major household expense, you always want to compare proposed costs so you know how much money you need to budget to get the best service you can afford.

When buying solar panels, it can be confusing.

♦ What will they cost over what period of time?

♦ What type of maintenance, warranty, and/or monitoring is included with the solar installation?

choose solar systemMyDomino can be particularly helpful in clarifying the differences in the proposals you receive. They can also advise you on what tradeoffs, if any, make the most sense. 

 

4) Compare financing, and figure out tax credits.

Should you buy your system outright, lease it, take out a loan, or get a power purchase agreement (PPA)?

How can you take advantage of the many county, state and federal financing programs available to help people install solar energy?

Once you know what kind of system you need and who you want to install it, MyDomino can help you figure out how to pay for it.

NOTHING TO LOSE! 

To begin, visit the MyDomino website, click “Get Started,” and fill out your information.

They’ll send you a link to a dashboard that’s set up specifically for you.

Once you set up your free account and complete a short questionnaire about how much energy your home already uses, you’ll get an email from your personal concierge (here’s a picture of the Domino team).

Domino team

My concierge is named Laura, and as soon as I submitted my form, I got a message from her inviting me to set up a time to chat with her about my home’s energy needs.

When we talked, I explained that my home was probably too shady for solar panels, but I was curious about what else I could do to save energy.

I’ve already changed out my lightbulbs to CFLs and LEDs, installed energy-efficient home appliances and a new water heater, insulated my windows and installed a programmable thermostat. Plus, I keep my house very cool in the winter, and don’t overcool it in the summer.

Laura still had some good suggestions for me (see below):

♥ I drive a hybrid car, but she suggested I try hypermiling and pump up my tires to use even less gas.

♥ She recommended I increase the amount of insulation in my attic, walls and crawl spaces, which will cut down on how much gas and electricity I use.

♥ She also suggested I consider replacing my programmable thermostat with a “smart” one, which can help save even more energy.

The total actions she and MyDomino suggested would save me $15,921 in energy costs over 30 years. That’s a good incentive to take the next steps!

how to choose home solar

 

choose solar systemIT’S FREE!!

Signing up for more information is free and does not obligate you to continue to work with MyDomino or to buy anything.

It’s simply a way to help you explore your options. It’s one of those “nothing to lose” deals.

Please check them out! MyDomino’s inspiring vision is to create 1 billion actions towards a clean energy future. I bet they can help you do at least a couple of things that will make you feel good about your own future – and save you some money, too.

 

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2 Responses to How to Choose the Best Solar System for Your Home

  1. Green Energy Audits October 25, 2016 at 7:40 am #

    Thanks for the great share! I also like the idea of Home Energy. The best part I like is this: The reliability and availability of modern energy sources cause people to tend to assume that it will always be accessible. And as for the case of non-renewable energy sources, most people do not know or maybe even refuse to accept that it will eventually run out.

    • Diane October 26, 2016 at 10:25 am #

      You are so right. Save energy, then switch to renewables. Can’t go wrong with that approach! Thanks for your comment.

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