Is my home a good fit for solar?
How big of a solar system do I need?
Contact us for a free, no-pressure consultation and quote.
Is the Midwest sunny enough for solar?
Yes. Although the Midwest doesn’t receive as much sunshine as California or Arizona, the price of solar equipment has fallen so much in the past few years that solar is now a good investment here. Other northern states, such as New York and Massachusetts, also have robust solar energy markets.
How much does a residential solar system cost?
The number of panels in a solar system is the biggest driver of cost. Systems with more panels are more expensive than systems with fewer panels. However, federal and state incentives can cover up to about 60 percent of the cost. We also have financing options available. Learn more about solar system costs and financing options here. We are happy to provide a free, no-pressure quote.
What incentives for solar are available in Illinois?
Both the federal government and Illinois provide incentives for home solar. The federal incentive is a tax credit worth 26% of the cost of the system for systems installed in 2020. It declines to 22% for systems installed in 2021. With it, you reduce the income tax you would otherwise pay by this amount. Click here for more information on how to take the credit.
The Illinois solar incentive comes in the form of Solar Renewable Energy Credits (“SRECs”) you earn with your system. Most Illinois utilities are required to purchase these from you (at prices set by the Illinois Power Agency) when you install your system. They are typically worth about 30% of the cost of a typical system. You should receive your SREC payment check within six months of energizing your system.
How much money will I save by going solar?
The amount you will save depends on how much electricity you consume today, the size of the solar system, the utility from which you receive service, and several other factors. Your solar consultant will answer this question specifically for your home during a consultation.
How long does it take to have solar installed?
On average it takes about 90 days, with the actual physical installation taking on average 1-2 days.
Our first step is to apply for permission to interconnect your system to your utility (“interconnection”) and for you to receive credit for any energy you send back to the grid (“net metering“). Most utilities take between 4-12 weeks to approve these applications.
At the same time that we apply for your interconnection and net metering, we will file to secure your state incentives. This ensures your incentive money is available to you as soon as possible.
Our next step is a detailed site assessment. We will reach out to you to schedule a time to come to your house so we can take pictures and gather information vital to the system engineering and installation process.
With the information gathered at the site assessment, we create detailed construction drawings. We will use them to get the required permits and, if necessary, get approval from your homeowners association.
Once the system is engineered, we apply for any building permits required by your municipality. Every municipality has different requirements, so our expert team will put together a custom package to receive approval as quickly as possible. Depending on where you live, this could take as long as 4-6 weeks.
When all the above steps are complete, we are ready to install your system. We will coordinate with you to schedule installation on a day that is convenient for you. Home solar installation takes one to three days, depending on the size of your system and the complexity of the project.
Once we complete your home solar installation, we arrange for an inspection by your municipal inspector. In some cases, we may need an additional approval from your utility. Once we have these approvals, we are ready to turn on your system.
As soon as we turn on your system, you will start saving money and producing 100% renewable energy. For most homes, this is 60-120 days after you accept our proposal.
Will solar panels damage my roof?
Will my system include batteries?
Generally, no. Most home solar systems are designed to operate in conjunction with the electric grid. That way, if you happen to consume more power at any moment than the solar system is producing, you draw the excess power from the grid. Conversely, when your solar system produces more than you are consuming at that moment, the excess power will flow into the grid. Your utility will net out all of this and you will only be billed for the net amount you consume from the grid.
We do not offer the option to include a battery at this time. However, our solar systems are compatible with a number of battery options; you can always add on a battery later.
How long will a solar system last?
What kind of maintenance is required?
Do you provide a warranty?
What areas do you serve?
We operate in the entire metropolitan Chicago area and in southeast Wisconsin.
What if I want to sell my home?
Research has found that solar panels can increase home values. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (a unit of the U.S. Department of Energy) issued a report in 2015 showing that homes with solar sell for more than similar homes that do not have solar. In fact, they found that the increase in sale price was greater than the net cost of the solar system. Other research has reached the same conclusion: having a solar system increases your home’s value.
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