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Have you thought of going solar but been told your roof is not suitable? Maybe you have excessive tree shading or a roof obstruction, such as a skylight or dormers. Maybe you’re a renter who simply can’t install solar panels. Or maybe you just don’t want the equipment on your roof.

The good news is, even if you fall into one of the categories above, you can still leverage solar to lower your electric bill while supporting the development of local, renewable energy. When you subscribe to a community solar project, you’ll receive credits on your monthly electric bill for the energy generated by your share of the project.

The Basics of Community Solar

Getting started with community solar isn’t difficult. The basic steps look like this:

  1. Search and compare community solar projects near you (they must be located in your
    utility’s service territory).

  2. Choose a project and subscribe.

  3. Your solar farm generates emission-free electricity.

  4. Utility companies distribute the electricity throughout the grid.

  5. Pay your community solar provider based on the energy generated by your share of the project.

  6. Your utility company applies credits to your monthly bill, reducing what you pay.

Why Sign Up for Community Solar?

So, why should you sign up for community solar? Choosing to join a community solar project comes with a number of benefits, including:

  • Savings on your electric bills: Most people who sign up for community solar save 5-15% on their annual electricity costs.

  • Great for renters and homeowners: Perfect for renters or homeowners who can’t have or don’t want solar panels on the roof.

  • Benefits the environment: Community solar projects generate local, emission-free electricity for 25+ years.

  • Supports local jobs: Because you can only sign up for community solar projects within your utility’s territory, you know you’re supporting renewable energy development in your local community. These projects require labor to build and maintain, which ultimately increases clean energy jobs near you!

In order to be eligible for community solar, you’ll need to make sure there are open projects in your area and, in some cases, you’ll need to meet the project’s credit score requirements. To explore what’s available in your area, check out EnergySage’s Community Solar Marketplace where you can browse, compare, and sign up for community solar projects near you.

Interested in learning more about community solar? Let us know and we’ll continue the series with more in-depth exploration. Got a specific question you’d like us to research? Email us and we’ll answer it in our next blog post!

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