Thinking about making the switch to solar energy? Whether you’re motivated by environmentalism, economics, or both, there’s never been a better time. Solar, you might've heard, is more affordable than ever. But: It can still be pretty complicated.

First, you have to learn about the various laws and regulations in your area. Then you have to calculate how much sunlight your house gets, how much money to stand to save or lose over the life of your system. Not to mention what kind and how many solar panels to buy, the best way to pay for them, the best people to install them, and so much more. In short, it can be pretty confusing.

That’s why, if you’re serious about going solar, you should definitely start by consulting with solar energy experts like the ones at Understand Solar.

Understand Solar

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Understand Solar is a third party solar energy advocate. They don’t sell solar panels. They don’t install them. Instead, they educate consumers, provide free estimates, and put consumers in touch with local installers.

If you’re new to solar, Understand Solar has the educational resources you need to become an expert. Learn how solar energy systems work, how they connect to the public grid, how much solar panels cost, and how long solar panels last. Understand Solar can also teach you about the various financing and leasing options available in your area, as well as any tax incentives available, such as the federal solar tax credit.

When you’re ready to take the next step, Understand Solar provides you with free a personalized assessment. All you have to do is fill out their simple online form and provide a few details about your home. After that, an Understand Solar expert will contact you via phone and go over your assessment and any questions you may have. But absolutely no commitment is required.

At that point you may learn that solar is not right for you. Maybe your house doesn’t get enough direct sunlight. Maybe the regulations and energy rates in your area make it unprofitable. However, you may learn that solar would make an outstanding investment.

How Much Is Solar Energy Worth For You?


The average cost of installing solar power systems has dropped a whopping 70 percent over the last decade thanks to lower equipment costs, lower installation costs, and government incentives like the federal solar tax credit. And naturally, as the startup costs have gone down, solar has become much better long-term investments.

Of course, the first thing most people think about when they consider solar is reducing their electricity bill. And it’s true that in some cases you can nearly or completely eliminate your dependence on traditional energy. However, those savings are often balanced out by the cost of installing the system, especially when you do long term financing. This isn’t a bad thing. You’re still doing something great for the planet by lowering your carbon footprint, and at the very least you are breaking even financially. But where you really stand to make money from an investment in solar is over the long term.

Over the last few years, we have started to get a much better idea of the value solar energy systems can add to a home. Though everything depends on where you live and how much sunlight your property gets, generally speaking homes with solar energy systems sell faster and for higher prices than homes without solar energy systems. One recent study found that solar energy systems add about 4.1 percent to the value of the average home. Another found buyers are typically willing to pay $15,000 more for a home with solar energy. And yet another concluded that you gain about $5,911 in value for each kilowatt of solar energy installed.

When you factor in projected increases in electricity rates over 10 to 20 years, and all the money you’ll save on traditional energy, plus the value a solar energy system can add to your home, solar panels can be a very good long term investment. In fact, it’s entirely possible that an investment in solar energy could outperform traditional investment portfolios over the course of 15-to-20 years.

So if you're ready to find out if solar energy is right for you, get your free personalized solar energy assessment from Understand Solar, today. You’ve got nothing to lose, but plenty to gain.

Futurism fans: To create this content, a non-editorial team worked with an affiliate partner. We may collect a small commission on items purchased through this page. This post does not necessarily reflect the views or the endorsement of the editorial staff.

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