Fossil Fuels: Are You a California Homeowner Who Still Uses This Expensive and Harmful Power Source?
What You’ll Discover In This Article:
● 3 main reasons why US homeowners still choose traditional Fossil Fuels as a power source.
● 3 horrible effects that fossil fuels are having on California residents.
● Why homeowners who have SDGE and PG&E currently have the biggest advantage.
● How new financing programs approved by the government are making it easy to switch to solar power at zero cost and still shave off 20-60% from their monthly power bill.
You’ve watched it on the news channels, listened to it on the radio, and have read about it in the newspapers and articles…
And with scientific reports that seem to pop up almost weekly, there’s no doubt that fossil fuels are having an extremely negative effect on our environment. Plus, it’s 2-3 times more expensive to use fossil fuels to power your home…
So why do you keep using it?
Let’s dive in and uncover the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to fossil fuels for powering your home. Plus, we’ll explore the options that are much cleaner and probably even more affordable than you think.
First, there are 3 horrible effects that are easy to see that come from fossil fuels:
- The earth’s atmosphere is suffering. There’s scientific evidence that proves this.
- The natural habitat is suffering. Pollution in the water and air is killing animals because fossil fuel residuals, oil spills, and the list goes on.
- Our own homes, families, and communities are suffering. The extreme dry weather in California is causing more frequent fires from power lines. Power lines exist because companies that rely on powering our homes with fossil fuels must generate the power and then deliver that to our homes using power lines and expensive to maintain systems
(i.e. The Camp Fire started from PG&E in late 2018, burning hundreds of homes, and killing 85 civilians).
The fire caused at least 85 civilian fatalities, with one person still missing, and injured 12 civilians, two prison inmate firefighters, and three other firefighters.
Location: Butte County, California
Burned area: 153,336 acres (62,052 ha)
Missing people: 1 civilian
Fatalities: 85 civilians
So why does it feel like no one’s really moving towards a future free of fossil fuels?
Actually, the facts show, we are. Unfortunately, we’re moving very slow.
The statistics positively show that homeowners in California are becoming more open to cleaner and cheaper sources of energy like solar energy, especially now that you can buy energy from solar the same way you can buy it from fossil fuels… Without any up-front cost.
Plus, in most larger cities, solar has now become cheaper than fossil fuel energy in California because the costs of panels and installation have dramatically decreased over the past 4 years. And the cost of energy from traditional providers like SDGE or PG&E is actually increasing faster and faster. So the demand to look outside these large monopolies is growing fast.
Up until about 2015, those who have tried to look outside fossil fuels and into renewable energy like solar, have been surprised with the extensive costs to switch to something like solar energy for their homes.
However, for the past 4 years both federal and state governments has pushed even harder to incentivize homeowners to make the switch to solar powered homes.
But the real question is:
By the time California and the rest of the country gets around to making the switch to solar, will it be too late?
There’s no doubt that California has certainly been the leader when it comes to state adaption to solar. California generates almost 5 times more solar energy than the runner up!
Here’s some more interesting solar facts for the State of California*:
- National Ranking: Ranks 1st
- Enough Solar Installed to Power: 6,709,000 homes
- Percentage of State’s Electricity from Solar: 18.74%
- Total Solar Investment in State: $62.36 billion ($5.78 billion in 2018)
- Solar Price Declines: 32% in the last 5 years
- Growth Ranking: Ranks 1st
Overall, California outranks all other states, but we still have a long way to go if only 18.74% of the states electricity comes from solar. So how can we speed it up? Is there anything a homeowner can do to start making a faster impact and put money in our pockets in the process?
The answer is: Of Course!
But first, we have to answer an even more important question:
Why aren’t more people making the switch? What’s stopping them?
- The cost of solar? (read on to see how most homeowners save thousands per year with solar)
- Lack of caring about our environment and our children’s future?
- Is it the inconvenience to get everything switched over?
- Is it the aesthetics? (How solar panels look on their roof)
Our research is showing 3 major reasons why homeowners have waited to switch to solar...
Our research is showing 3 major reasons why homeowners have waited to switch to solar...
Reason #1: The Cost
The cost has been the number one reason for people to hold off on going solar. However, in 2019, the financial options to switch to solar have become so flexible, there’s very little reason a homeowner cannot switch to solar. Companies like Sunrun have made it so affordable that they even offer what’s called a PPA (Power Purchase Agreement).
What is a PPA?
PPA is an option not known by many, but can help most homeowners make the switch affordably and save money each month. You can see if your home qualifies for a zero cost PPA right here.
Basically, a PPA allows you to buy solar power from the panels they install on your roof. You don’t buy the panels, you’re simply buying power. You can imagine the savings that are produced when Sunrun doesn’t have to maintain power lines and power grids, pay for lawsuits from fires caused by downed power lines, etc. Those savings are then passed on to you. They handle the entire installation and paperwork process from start to finish and it doesn’t cost the homeowner a dime. And because they can almost guarantee that they will match or beat the current traditional power company rates in California, you still save 20-50% off your average traditional power bill. The amount of savings depends on your home location, shading on your roof, and a few other factors.
Purchasing with a loan
Putting the PPA aside, the most popular option to date is to purchase the system yourself with a loan. There are several companies that are setup to help you finance it so you monthly payment is 20-50% cheaper than paying your utility company for power from fossil fuels.
Below is a comparison between types of solar financing in California. You can see that many people haven’t known about a PPA because it hasn’t always been available and still isn’t available to smaller areas in California.
Overall, the popularity of a PPA is rising fast, especially those that are currently with SDGE (SoCal area) or PG&E (NorCal area). See if your home qualifies with this simple quiz that takes seconds to complete.
Reason #2: The INCONVENIENCE
Many homeowners report that it’s just not on the top of their list right now. There’s plenty of other projects they have going. However, now companies are offering to do every step for you, whether you pay in cash, loan, or PPA. This is amazing!
If the standard busy homeowner tries to arrange everything on their own, I estimate it takes 6-8 months to get it done!
- That’s between sourcing the right materials…
- Designing the solar panels to generate enough power to replace their current usage….
- Subcontracting the electrician and the solar panel installation crew…
- Acquiring required permits from the city/county…
- Communicating the required paperwork with their power company…
- And getting the required final inspection done by the city/county and permission to operate solar.
It takes planning to get it all done.
As you can see, it’s not easy doing this yourself. It takes planning ahead and knowing the right tools and resources to get it all done.
I guess the question now is: Why not make this a priority to hire it out, when it literally costs nothing to make the switch?
Why not take an hour out of your week to meet with a solar specialist and get the process started?
The whole process is handled for you.
All you have to do is show up and meet the installation team. It’s really no different than switching your internet provider.
For instance, Surun is the largest residential solar provider in the nation and they offer a simple step by step process from design to installation and it’s all done for you with no up-front cost.
(NOTE: We’ve found that a homeowners time involved is only 3-5 hours spread over 30 days, that’s it!)
It’s almost as if the tables have turned and now it’s so affordable and convenient to switch to solar, that there’s no real excuse not to get it done. Take this quiz to see if your home qualifies for zero cost solar.
Reason #3: The AESTHETICS
This is an interesting dilemma.
On one hand, people want a better future for our earth and want to reduce pollution and use smarter cleaner energy, like solar.
On the other hand, we estimate that 10% of homeowners that considered solar actually change their mind because they are concerned about the look of their roofs with solar panels attached to it.
I guess we better just ask ourselves, do we want a better future for the earth, plus cheaper power rates? Or have the roof of our homes look cool and pay more for power and continue to harm the planet?
Seriously… Do we even need to ask that question? I guess 10% of people do.
Some are worried about damaging their roofs…
Some are concerned that the panels will cause issues with damaging their roof now or in the future. That’s a legitimate concern, no one wants a leaky roof, right?
However, every qualified installation company includes a 10-20 year warranty on the roof, depending on the type of installation and the system size. They even “double insure” if you choose a PPA option compared to owning it yourself. That’s because the company also needs to protect the assets they have installed on your roof, so they can make their money back over time.
In the end, there’s really no reason to worry about your roof or the look of it. Most homeowners end up loving the way it looks and feels on their roof. Many actually take pride in the fact that their home has solar and are seen as someone who cares about the environment and as an innovative person.
Bonus Reason #4: OVERWHELM
With the abundance of information found online about solar, you would think people are highly informed and know exactly what their options are. But the exact opposite it true.
The numbers show that most people in California and throughout the US really care about making a change and know that fossil fuels must come to an end. They just don’t know where to start. (This quiz is a great start)
The amount of financing options, the scary “rip off” stories advertised on the news, and the various types of solar panels to buy make it extremely overwhelming.
So they do nothing…
Or, they’ve looked into solar before and it was too expensive.
Let me make this crystal clear: NOW is the best time to look into solar again.
Companies are making it easy to make the switch and doing all the work for you. Plus, with the little know PPA financing option, it’s now making more sense than ever before to switch to solar.
Interesting Note: We estimate that 70% of homeowners still don’t realize that they can make the switch to solar with zero cost, save money each month with a locked in low monthly solar power rate, and their roof is completely safe, insured, and warrantied.
If you’re a homeowner that still hasn’t made the switch to solar, the big question for you is…
At this point you’re probably asking:
How Do I Get Started?
The first step is to see if your home is qualified for solar. We’ve developed a free quiz will give you an answer within 30 seconds.
“Bottom line—this has been an amazing financial decision on our part, and I would recommend this program to anyone who is thinking about going solar and wants to reduce their power bills.”
NOTE : This program is still available, but solar incentives are reduced after 2019.