The California Public Utilities Commission has released new guidelines in the California Solar Protection Guide that will protect homeowners going solar. The CPUC will now require all solar companies to upload a copy of the guide to the utility (SCE) signed by the consumer coming September 30th, 2019.
Solar has not only been recognized as a positive renewable energy alternative for over a decade but has become a more inviting substitute because of the tax incentive as well as the overall declining cost with improving technology. Yet, even with the promise of savings, we have watched potential customers get turned off by the notorious doorknockers and telemarketers giving solar a tainted reputation.
When the solar industry took off, there was more than a few fly by night companies who saw the booming industry as an opportunity to make money. Without long-term goals and lack of sustainable practices, these companies left the solar industry almost as soon as they entered leaving clients with broken promises of free solar, outrageous leases beyond their means and with no one to call.
With this said, we are excited to share that the California Public Utilities Commission has released new guidelines in the California Solar Protection Guide that will protect homeowners going solar. The CPUC will now require all solar companies to upload a copy of the guide to the utility (SCE) signed by the consumer coming September 30th, 2019.
What is the California Solar Protection Guide?
The California Solar Protection Guide is intended to protect consumers from false claims, unlicensed companies and potential scams. In this guide, you can find questions to ask solar companies that will help weed out the untrustworthy companies as well as find information to help you through the solar process. The 23-page guide covers several parts of the solar process from start to finish. It includes: False Claims to Watch Out For, Knowing Your Rights, Questions to Ask Before Signing a Contract, Consider if Solar is your Best Option, Low-income Solar Programs, The Solar Process Overview, Financing Options, Understanding Electric Bill Savings and more.
Be Wary of Unethical Business Practices
Just a few weeks ago one of our own employees had a doorknocker come to her home with iPad in hand claiming that he would like to talk to the homeowner about Southern California Edison rates. After seeing his shirt that had a company logo in the top right corner, she asked whether he worked for SCE or the said solar company on his shirt. He said he worked for said solar company but that ‘his company was a licensed solar contractor that worked with Edison’.
To clarify, SCE does not have a contracted solar company that they’re sending out to go door to door. This was simply a sales tactic that used Edison—a name that all Coachella Valley residents recognize, in order to gain her attention.
In another instance, one of our account representatives had a different company knock on his door. The young gentleman inquired about his bill and insisted our account rep (who is a homeowner) get solar right away. Our rep then mentioned that he was interested in Hot Purple Energy only to have the gentleman respond that his company works with Hot Purple Energy. This, of course, was not true, yet he rambled on about it. It is highly unlikely that two solar companies are working together. In this case, the gentleman lied to try and make the sale. Still, as a consumer, you should verify with the other company to determine whether their claims are true.
How does Hot Purple measure up?
Since day one, Hot Purple Energy was an outlier in the solar industry because we talked so many neighbors and community members into less solar if we could find a better energy solution for them. This is how we earned the trust of both our clients and communities. Many people know HPE has a construction background, but not many know that the whole reason Nathan Otto, president and CEO started the company was because solar was being offered by companies that were based on sales and unethical business practices rather than hands-on construction trade knowledge and an honest desire to improve communities and help the earth.
We are genuinely relieved that consumers will now have a trusted guide to refer to when looking for the best energy solution for their home.