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A smart shopper compares products and services. Make sure you ask these questions Before Going Solar:

Does the solar contractor outsource their crew to a non-local company?

□ yes □ no

Subcontracting will leave a disconnect between your engineering and installation. It is important to remember that you are purchasing your own "utility company" (solar power) for your home.

Is your quoted price-per-watt before applying the Investment Tax Credit or after?

□ yes □ no

The Investment Tax Credit (ITC) gives you 30% off the cost of a solar system until December 2019.

Will the solar contractor conduct a pre-site evaluation at your home before installing?

□ yes □ no

The majority of companies only rely on a satellite image from Google Earth as an official home evaluation. This assessment is not always accurate because Google Earth cannot show shading issues, roof defects, or if main service panel upgrades are necessary before installing solar. Beware of future markups, and ask for specifics on the service performance with SolMetric such as, “How much will my system produce over a 10-year average?”

Does the solar provider offer a warranty?

□ yes □ no

What are the warranty specifics? Will the contractor be around long enough to honor your warranty? 2015 was a modern-day gold rush for solar, and there have been many fly-by-night firms that are trying to make a quick buck on going green. Select a confident company/brand with a proven track record.

Can the installer provide references for your area?

□ yes □ no

Review the solar company’s references for quality and service. Past clients may give insight to the process of going solar from a personal point of view.

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