Politics

Ga. Residents Can Now Get Financing For Rooftop Solar Panels

A small loader moves and lifts solar panels in Walton County. In Georgia, residents will be able to install and finance solar panels on their property through third-party lenders.
A small loader moves and lifts solar panels in Walton County. In Georgia, residents will be able to install and finance solar panels on their property through third-party lenders.
Credit Courtesy of Greg Brooks / Walton EMC

Putting solar panels on your rooftop just became way more affordable: Customers can now pay for just the power they get from the solar panels.

A new law took effect Wednesday that allows financing for residents who want to lease rooftop solar panels.

Bo Finauvice president of business development with Creative Solar USA in Kennesaw, expects his business to double by the end of the year.

“They wouldn’t be paying for the installation, the labor, for the actual panels themselves, and also the insurance,” Finau said. “So there’s quite a few things that are covered and protected while this third-party leasing is in effect.”

Finau said people will likely save around 15 percent off their current utility bills by leasing panels.

Julie Hairston, of the Georgia Solar Energy Association, said the law is a major step in a state where financing was not allowed.

“It’s hard to deny that we have abundant sunshine and that we should be putting it to work for us, and we are now beginning to realize that potential.” 

She says customers should be careful about who they choose to finance their solar panels

Georgia Power also announced it would sell solar panel installation services to interested residential customers. 

It is through a separate business unit called the Georgia Power Energy Services.

“It’s an unregulated part of the business, so that those costs are not borne by our rate payers or our regular customers,” said John Kraft, a spokesman with Georgia Power.
 
This is the first time a Southern Co. division has entered the residential solar market.
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