Our response to Newsday: Solar panel leasing deals on LI plagued by consumer complaints - EmPower Solar

Our response to Newsday: Solar panel leasing deals on LI plagued by consumer complaints


As you may have seen, Newsday recently published a report on the state of solar on Long Island. They investigated a wave of customer complaints by homeowners who were pushed into solar by aggressive sales tactics, often by national companies and are now realizing their systems do not perform as promised.

We applaud Newsday for taking the time to highlight the importance of consumer education and covering these long-overdue topics. We always encourage clients to educate themselves and understand all rebates, financing programs, and products available before selecting an installer or savings plan.

EmPower Solar does not identify with the aggressive and unethical practices commonly used by many solar companies, including many of the national brands. This evidence is clear in our consistent 5-star reviews, our high system performance records, and the many homeowners who go solar with us not only once, but twice when they move.

It’s true – not everyone should go solar!

Our amazing customer experience team answers phone calls all day from homeowners who want to go solar. Derek, Devin and Summer will be the first to tell you if you are NOT a good candidate for solar. This might be because you roof is facing the wrong way, your house is in the shade, or your electric bill is too low. No matter the reason, we are always upfront and honest with homeowners about the reasons they should not go solar. We often hear that XYZ Company said the homeowner COULD go solar – in those cases, we recommend that they request shade reports and read all the fine print before they go solar. EmPower Solar carries the most efficient panels available in the world and we have an amazing engineering and installation team, so if we can’t install a successful system, we are skeptical of companies that say they can.

For some, leasing is their best option!

The article focused on the pitfalls of leasing. While most of our clients choose to purchase or finance their systems to take advantage of long-term savings, there are some homes where leasing is their best option, and can provide enormous savings! Choosing to lease your solar panels allows you to take advantage of a fixed, low monthly payment with no out of pocket cost. For someone retired, or on disability and that does not pay income taxes, going solar with a purchase or a finance may not be financially viable for them due to tax credit availability. A lease allows them to reduce their monthly electric bills with no out of pocket cost and save typically between $10,000-$20,000 over the 20 year lease. For anyone considering a lease, we advise you learn exactly what the transferability is and exactly what the annual rate increase is, if any. Our SunPower lease is typically fixed with no increase for 20 years, with a warranty that lasts longer than the lease itself. There is a simple transfer process if you move, and we’ve done it dozens of times. As long as you are an educated consumer, there are ways to take advantage of a lease and find huge rate relief.

EmPower Solar is helping consumers who have been left in the dark

EmPower Solar’s full time service team has been contracted by some of the national companies who no longer operate in our area and we are committed to helping those clients have a successful experience with their solar systems. We also often get inquiries often from frustrated homeowners who chose to go solar with another provider but were abandoned when their company left town or closed up all together. Our queue for this type of work is getting longer, but we are happy to help Long Island’s solar community where we can! Please email service@empower-solar.com if you are having an issue with your solar system.

This is not the first time we’ve written about these topics. Check out our blog “Solar Knocked on your Door – Is what they are Saying True?”

Check out our Resources and Downloads page to get a list of “Questions to Ask Your Solar Contractor”

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