Troubleshooters: Investigating sales tactics by solar panel companies
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) — The sales pitch for residential solar panels can be pretty tempting: save on electricity at little or no cost to you.
But a Troubleshooters investigation found you need to enter into an agreement with your eyes wide open to see beyond the sunny sales pitch that includes promises of substantial savings and free panels.
With the solar business booming, a growing number of homeowners are looking to save money on electricity and help the environment.
Here is how solar programs work:
You can buy panels, lease them or sign a Power Purchase Agreement, like Fetrow’s mother did.
In every case, you don’t have to put money down but you do have to make a monthly payment to the solar company.
The pitch is a big chunk of those new payments will be offset by savings on your electric bill.
“No matter what, consumers will have to pay for the solar panels in one way or another,” said Daniel Stevens Executive Director of the Campaign for Accountability.
In the Sunnova PPA, consumers pay Sunnova monthly for the energy their panels generate.
However, the energy rate could go up every year by 2.9%.