By Jessie Trapp, Marketing Coordinator
California has long been known as a trendsetter within the realm of green energy, but it recently had a “mic drop” moment that could set the tone for the future of renewable energy integration in homes.
That moment took place during May of 2018, when the Golden State became the first to pass a requirement for newly built homes to have solar panels on their roofs. The new standards are part of a major step towards California’s goal to make renewable energy the producer of a whopping 50% of its overall electricity by 2030, which was set in 2015.
Although the mandate issued by the California Energy Commission won’t go into effect until 2020, it’s likely at the top of minds of many who are considering buying a house in the not-so-distant future.
What does solar power currently look like in California? An article by The New York Times regarding the new requirement states that, as of the end of 2017, solar power makes up “almost 16 percent of the state’s electricity, and the industry employs more than 86,000 workers”. This makes California the undisputed leader in the realm of solar power energy in the US.
How will the requirement affect home prices? The addition of solar panels is expected to add $8,000 to $12,000 to the initial cost of participating homes. Not to worry – the California Energy Commission claims that “based on a 30-year mortgage, (it is estimated that) the standards will add about $40 to an average monthly payment, but save consumers $80 on monthly heating, cooling and lighting bills”. That being said, what may seem like a hefty chunk of change in the minds of your clients at first is really a massive money saver in the long-run.
How does this affect you, the agent? As renewable energy sources such as solar power slowly become the norm, they will likely become increasingly expected by homeowners. For now, you can utilize the coming changes as an opportunity to highlight existing solar power features in homes as being ahead of the game. If you want to emphasize the cost saving benefits they can provide to clients, visit a site like Project Sunroof to get accurate estimates of their solar power savings potential.
What about the other states? California may be the first to make groundbreaking moves when it comes to solar power, but it is unlikely to be the last. California will serve an experiment for other states to observe and study before they attempt to implement rules and requirements of their own towards the adoption of renewable energy.
Want to see how your state stacks up in the ranks of solar power integration ranks? Find the rankings here.