Ged Taylor was one of the first homeowners in New Zealand to get solar and affordable battery storage with our solarZero+ energy service.
By adding battery storage he's able to save any surplus solar power generated during the day so that it can be used at night. He says that's a real bonus.
"We also love the backup feature. It means that in a power cut we'd have enough power for a laptop and modem as well as a radio and some lighting. That's a big plus, particularly if we need to reach our kids during in an emergency."
At the time that Ged chose solarZero+ he was building a new home and energy efficiency and sustainability were top of mind. With all the costs associated with the build he says it was fantastic that solarZero+ meant he could go solar without needing to buy the panels, or the battery. Instead he pays a low monthly fee for our energy services that will deliver inflation-free solar power and improved energy efficiency for the next 20 years.
"With power prices always increasing, it's comforting to know our solar price is locked in for a long, long time. Not only that but, by using clean solar energy, we're also doing our bit to look after the planet."
Gary Holden is the CEO of gas and electricity retailer Pulse Energy. He chose our solarZero plan to help meet his home's daytime energy needs and to power his family's two electric cars.
"solarcity made us an offer we couldn't refuse. With solarZero they put up the upfront capital which means we get to use our extra cash for other things, plus we get a built-in hedge against power prices rising. The payments we make to solarcity today will be the same amount 20 years from now. It will seem incredibly cheap then.
Adding solar power is adding value to the home. I believe homes with solar will sell at a premium in the future. Investing in solar is a sensible home improvement as the value in the future energy production will last for decades.
"solarcity helped us size the solar system so that we can charge up both our cars during the day. One good sunny day can produce enough to last two to four days in the car, leaving the rest of the power production to run regular household items like the refrigerator and the floor heating. We've worked out that based on solarZero, solar power into a car is about 30 cents a litre compared to petrol at about $1.80.
"More people switching to electric vehicles powered by clean energy will have a huge beneficial impact to our environment as the transport sector creates more than 40% of NZ's energy-related carbon dioxide emissions. It will also save the economy large expenditures every year on petrol and diesel. Smogless air and nice quiet traffic areas will be an added bonus.
"On a global scale climate change is such a huge issue it can be hard to see a way out. But, with companies like solarcity making it simple and affordable to go solar, each of us can make a difference right now."
Ivy Tapsell loved the idea of going solar but, like many Kiwis, she had been put off by the high cost of owning a system. That all changed when she heard about our solarZero energy service that let her power her Waiuku home on solar without buying the equipment.
"I'd looked around and this was the only way I could go solar without paying thousands of dollars upfront," she says. "Plus knowing solarcity manages the system for the next 20 years was really attractive, too."
Ivy's reasons for going solar were economic and environmental. "I was looking for ways to reduce costs and be kinder to the environment. Solar is a great renewable resource so we should be tapping into it."
As a shiftworker, Ivy is often home during the day and is able to maximise her solar use. "I'm much more conscious of when I'm using my big appliances now. It makes far more sense to turn the dishwasher on during the day rather than at night, like I used to, when power is expensive."
Lara and Tony Mills
Lara and Tony Mills say going solar was a lifestyle choice for them and their two young children. "We've always wanted to be as green as possible and solarZero gave us the opportunity to make a difference." And, by choosing to go with an upfront payment of $1000, they'll be able to save more money on their power bills over time.
With both children under school age, Lara and the kids spend a lot of time at home during the day, so solar is a great way to power the house. "We've taken a real step in the right direction. We'd recommend solarcity to anyone."
John and Virginia Driver
John and Virginia Driver, and their daughter Maddy, loved having a solar hotwater heat pump so much they jumped at the chance to power their whole home using the sun. They had been keen on solar power for a long time so, with plans to build a 4-Star Green Star Home and the launch of our solarZero plan, they were convinced the time was right.
They decided to make an upfront payment of $1000 which dropped their monthly fee and boosts the savings they make on their power bills over the long term. That's making the family of three very happy. "I've recommended solarZero to everyone," says Virginia.
Environmentally conscious Deepak Desousa was our first solarZero customer. Deepak was spurred on to look for a renewable and sustainable energy source after experiencing an Auckland-wide power cut that resulted in his home losing hot water for a week. After investigating solar power he came across solarcity and was impressed by our rich background and strong credentials.
Once the system was installed on the roof of his Henderson home Deepak was looking forward to lower power bills and was excited to tell everyone he knew about the excellent service he had from the start of his solar journey. “I really appreciate all the time that solarcity set aside to talk to me and the follow up I’ve received. I never had to call solarcity they always called me and I always knew what was happening.”
Bronwyn Morrison had investigated solar previously and had always found it too expensive. After researching the option of solar hot water she found solarZero and, after talking with our team team, knew it was the right option for her and her family. Bronwyn told us it was the concept of future proofing herself against increasing electricity prices and being able to do her bit to help the environment that most appealed to her.
“It’s something we’d been hoping to do for many years, and it wasn’t viable - and now we can we’re thrilled. We’re recommending it to everyone. All the neighbours are very interested, it’s a superb option for families.”
William (Bill) Charles
Bill Charles, of Huntly, had been wanting to install solar panels on his home for years. Like many Kiwis he simply couldn’t afford the initial outlay that has traditionally been needed for solar panels. When he saw our offer of solar power without the cost of buying a system, he jumped at the chance. He says it was the perfect way to fulfil his long term dream of living more sustainably. Bill is now enjoying the savings and tells us that it’s the “best decision I’ve ever made”.
Genesis Energy Residential Solar Pilot Program
We worked closely with Genesis Energy when it ran a pilot scheme for residential solar systems. We were chosen for our experience and market reputation for successful delivery. We supported the development of an end-to-end delivery package incorporating IT and systems integration with detailed performance tracking. Detailed KPIs were put in place to track health and safety, supply chain security, reliability of installation teams and to ensure that solarcity met Genesis Energy's customer experience targets.
We successfully delivered the design, supply and installation of the nation's largest rollout of residential solar systems in one programme for Genesis Energy. Customer feedback has been extremely positive for the home solar installations pilot.
The Hughes Family
The Hughes family are very conscious of their carbon footprint and the choices they make to reduce it. Before installing PV panels their annual electricity bill exceeded $2,000. While working on a project for the Solar Saver Scheme in Nelson, Carolyn Hughes found the statistics and savings provided by solar PV generation very compelling. Based on quality, price and being a local business, the Hughes family chose to work with us. “The solarcity team was great to deal with and I love that we’re supporting a local company,” says Carolyn.
“Solar has made a major difference to our consumption and cost. It has freed us from the stress of waiting for the inevitable price rises by the power company. Power prices have more than doubled since 2004, but that won’t impact on us any more.”
Jose Luis Gay Cano
Jose and his family live in a four bedroom home on 30 hectares near Nelson. They built with environmental specifications in mind, including a ground-mounted solar PV array and a rooftop solar hot water system.
The farm runs the largest reserve of wild horses in the South Island, with the solar panels providing 50% of the home and farm's energy requirements. The use of solar on the farm saves over 1,000kgs of carbon emissions every year. Jose is able to track the savings made on an iPad that shows the family the energy they are using and generating.
“We have future proofed our home. In the summer I enjoy watching our power meters run in reverse. We really want to inspire others to do the same.”
Peter Hulland and his family installed a solar system on their home in 2012. Based on quality, price and being local, the family chose solarcity. And since installing 14 panels on their roof, their power bills have halved.
"It's really cool generating our own power. I can look on the website and see what I'm generating. I love to look out the window and see the sun shining. From the point of the view of the environment, I feel like I am doing my bit,” says Peter. T