Tag Archive | "apartment"

Solar Apartment Complex Financial Equation

Apartment Solar Is Not Complex

Why is it that solar panels are not a more common sight on the average apartment complex in the United States?  Well, one of the biggest reasons is the cost factor, that we all know.  Another reason is that more often then not, the community that often makes up the ownership of the individual apartment units may not always agree or even desire to have solar panels producing electricity.  Especially if some of the apartment owners feel the solar panels are going to be an eye sore to their views.  But at the end of the day, there are lots of longterm financial equation reasons that a community owned solar PV system makes a ton of sense.

Sharing The Cost

If I was interested in moving into a newly built apartment building, and if I was also going to be an owner of a single apartment, solar does make sense.  What would be necessary however, is for some ground rules to be in place.  Some of these would be based on maximizing the financial benefits the solar electricity could offer the owners/apartment dwellers.  So for example, if the local utility is willing to allow for a grid connected solar system, that is obviously a huge first step.  Also, if there are certain maximums in terms of size of the solar system, that must be taken into consideration as well.  If it was possible for the solar system to be built while the building was being constructed, that would allow for installation costs to be as low as possible, which is also great.  And, if there was agreement to put all the electricity that is produced towards covering common costs that the apartment owners would otherwise being paying in HOA fees, well, that to me sounds like a good thing right?

In the event that there was an excess amount of clean solar power produced, and the local utility was offering a cash compensation back to the producers, well, that extra money could be put in the general fund of the apartment owners and use to cover other expenses.  With a program like this, the overall time and effort in deciding what to do with the solar power created would be minimal.  Everyone would be on the same page, and everyone would benefit as well.  And of course the 25 plus years of expected solar energy would most definitely increase in value over time.  And who knows, there might even be other bonuses out there such as selling REC’s (renewable energy credits) and maybe other deductions or incentives that could make the financial model look even more appealing.

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Solar Power For Apartments

Solar Apartment Ideas

Much of the population of the United States lives in houses, but there is also a very large percentage of the population who live in apartments as well.  Millions of people actually live in apartments or apartment buildings all over the US.  Usually, the electricity needs and consumption for people who live in apartments is typically less than people who live in houses.  There are several reasons for this, and this is actually a positive feature of apartment living.  When it comes down to living a sustainable future in an apartment, there is sometimes few options for solar panels and producing your own electricity.

Some of the newest apartments to be built in cities like New Orleans and Los Angeles and San Francisco are focusing on solar power to help keep utility company generated electricity consumption low.  This is one of the most progressive ways of thinking, and it looks to be very successful so far.  The common apartment building which is located in an urban area or big city, is often open to direct sunlight all day long.  This is not always the case, but often it is.  Also, newly built apartments are not going to be in need of roof repairs for a very long time.  This is also a very positive thing for solar power.  And most importantly, newly constructed apartments are going to be around for many years.  That is exactly what solar panels like.  They have a very long lifespan, and need to be sitting on a roof that will exist for a long time too.

Benefits of Solar Power for Apartments

  1. Apartment owners can sell the electricity to their tenants
  2. Tenants can make use of clean energy
  3. Property value of the apartments increases with solar power
  4. Apartment owners can make use of solar tax credits
  5. Electricity costs can be hedged with solar panels

Negative Aspects of Solar Power for Apartments

  1. Difficult to figure out how to divide construction costs
  2. Certain solar incentives and rebates might not be available to apartment owners
  3. A direct feed of the solar electricity to the electric panel is sometimes difficult
  4. Cleaning of the solar panels is sometimes not accessible

Solar Power for Public Housing Aparment Buildings

One of the most impressive new initiatives is the growth in solar power for public housing apartment buildings all over the United States.  This is an excellent program for several reasons.  One of those reasons has to do with educating the lower class about the importance of renewable energy sources.  Without educating people about how solar power and renewable energy works, it would be an even harder uphill battle to make real changes around the world.  The second big benefit for placing solar panel systems on public housing is all about the investment.  Sometimes local and state and federal governments just don’t know where to spend their money.  With a solar system, the benefits of clean energy production will last for over 25 years in most cases.  And, there are very little maintenance costs associated with solar energy.  So, by installing solar panels on these apartment buildings, and offering low income people solar, it should be looked at as money well spent.

Below are two pictures of solar panels on apartment buildings:

urban solar panels

solar panel apartment building

PV solar apartment buildings

PV solar panels on an apartment

Posted in Green Energy, PicturesComments (9)