SolarCity is the largest installer of residential solar panels in America although their market share is slipping as more and more consumers choose cash purchases over long term solar lease or solar PPA contracts.
Although they would not be my first choice as an installer they have done an enormous amount to promote solar in America and the zero down solar PPA agreements that they pioneered have been very popular.
They now sit at the more expensive end of the zero down solar PPA market with their usual PPA offering being 15-16 cents per kWh, about 1-2 cents per kilowatt hour above the cheapest PPA offerings in most major markets.
It will be interesting to see during 2017 whether they try and compete on price with the other cheaper PPA companies like Vivint and Verengo or whether they seek to concentrate on unique product offerings from their parent company Tesla, such as Powerwall batteries and solar roof tiles.
|States they service||
|Head Office||444 De Haro Street, San Francisco, CA 94107|
Cash purchases usually around $4 per what and for
zero down PPA’s 16-17 cents per kilowatt hour with an annual increase in this rate of 2.9%.
This may vary in some markets where the availability of production incentives make cheaper PPA's possible.
Solarcity usually quote just above $4 per watt for cash purchases of their systems because they prefer clients to take the PPA option.
|SolarReviews reviews||2.59 based on 83 reviews|
|Yelp reviews||417 reviews|
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Advantages of SolarCity
- No out of pocket cost
- Maintenance done by SolarCity if needed (should be very little maintenance of solar panels)
- Of the big mega solar PPA companies probably the best customer service
Disadvantages of Solar City
- Poor customer satisfaction ratings compared to smaller local installers
- Most of the savings offered by the solar tax credit and the net metering legislation go to the solar company not the consumer
- The rate of PPA price escalation is a concern and means if utility prices grow at less than the escalation percentage the savings could get less over time