Why You Should Consider Joining the Orange County Solar Co-Op

A solar co-op is a group comprising property owners that come together to use their combined buying power to save money on solar installations. These co-ops are usually member-driven, and they are free to join. As a member, users will receive personalized bids from a solar installer picked by the group. Once you get the bid, you can decide whether to forge ahead with the solar installation.


Main Benefits

The first benefit is that you get access to competitive pricing. Buying solar systems as part of a group will save money. Co-ops solicit competitive bids from the installers, which ensures you will receive a good price for a personalized solar proposal. For installers, finding, and acquiring customers is a huge expense. Working with a co-op helps them cut costs, which means they can charge less.


Another benefit is that members receive expert and independent advice throughout the process. They work to ensure that members have the best information to make sure they make informed decisions. Since they operate as a non-profit and not an installer, their primary goal is to ensure that members have a great experience when they opt to use solar power.


How it Works

Joining a solar co-op is free. When one joins, it does not commit them to go solar. A co-op is organized by region. For instance, it could be county-wide, such as a co-op for Orange County or it can span several counties. IT can take three to nine months, depending on when you joined the co-op. Most co-ops have 30 to 100 members. They are large enough that installers are willing to send competitive bids. However, they are small enough that members can meet and connect.


Before a co-op is created, a series of free public sessions are organized. Experts will explain the basics of solar power, solar economics, and how the co-ops work. The sessions are tailored to particular areas since incentives and local policies play a big impact on your experience when going solar.


Joining the co-op is free, and it does not commit one to installing solar. As a member, you will be assisted in properly evaluating your roof for solar power, and shown how solar will lower your energy bills.


Once there are enough people in a co-op, the organizers will ask for proposals from local installers. Co-op members volunteer to be part of the Installer Selection Committee, which meets to review bids from the installers. This team receives technical assistance and advice on how to pick the right installers. Once an installer is picked, additional members can join the co-op for a limited time.


Summary

For a homeowner, there is no downside to being part of a solar co-op. Not only do they gain access to highly accurate information, but they also get access to lower prices because of their combined purchasing power. For residents of Orange County, being part of a co-op would make a lot of sense.

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