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Rooftop Solar

Make a solid decision about solar

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Davis Solar Systems 2016 502 of 500 solar permits
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It's never been cheaper

The cost of solar installations has continued to fall while the expertise and number of local and regional contractors has continued to climb.

Tax credits and exclusions are still available

For those who purchase a solar system, a federal tax credit offsets up to 30% of the installation cost through 2019. This percentage will fall by 4% every two years until the end of 2021. The state of California provides a property tax exclusion up to 100% though 2024.

Good return on investment

Paying in cash makes a lot of sense. You own the system and with the cost of solar declining, you can expect to fully recoup your up front costs within 5 to 10 years with an internal rate of return of 15 to 25%. Even if you don’t pay cash, your PG&E bills will likely be much lower right away.

Choose from a pool of experienced contractors

Coming Winter 2017: Our solar provider selection tool will help you find a contractor that meets your needs.

Payment options for every budget

  • Pay cash for an instant return on investment
  • Loans from a credit union or bank will let you pay directly for your own solar system
  • Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing offers flexible repayment plans up to 20 years & is paid through property taxes
  • Power purchase agreements (PPA) & leases allow you to buy solar power without owning the system

Davis gets it done!

The City, local contractors, and local organizations have supported the installation of over 2,000 solar systems. Our community is now well practiced in this process and is ready for you!

Produce your own power

Renewable energy in the form of a solar photovoltaic array on your rooftop has the potential to fully power your home as well as provide excess power.

Protect future generations

Energy independence is a critical step in the journey towards a stable and secure future for our children.

Power your electric vehicle

Work with your contractor on your system plan to power an electric vehicle. You will live and drive solar!

Cool the climate

Temperatures are rising but solar energy deployed across our community will contribute to a cooler planet and a better quality of life for all.

Double up on rooftop solar by 2020!
In May of 2016, our City Council adopted a cumulative goal of 4,500 single family household solar installations totaling 21 megawatts capacity by the end of 2020.

Do you own your home and plan to stay for at least 3 to 5 years?

A purchased solar system could very easily pay for itself within 5 to 10 years. Some homeowners view solar as a solid financial investment as well as an effective way to downsize their monthly bills.

Is money a limiting factor?

There are installation options for every budget. Solar systems can be purchased with cash, financed with a personal bank loan, financed via a PACE property tax assessed loan, or leased with no up front costs.

Is your roof shaded?

Don’t let a bit of shade deter you from checking out solar. New technologies or simple tree trimming might be the solution you need.

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Ask about experience and reputation

Don’t be shy to ask about the number and type of installations including rooftops. Check out their license with the state and look for online reviews.

Get at least 3 bids and reasonable warranties

If possible, try to get a general idea of the system you want before asking for a formal bid, then ask each of the three to bid on a similar system so it’s easier to compare. View our Solar: Hire the Right Contractor Cool Solutions page for details about warranties.

Get a thorough roof assessment

Solar systems usually last about as long as a roof, at the same time sections of roof can often be repaired to accommodate a solar system. Remove and replace clauses can protect you if the roof fails before the solar system.

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Make sure you’re getting a fair price

Comparing your bid to the average and calculating total system cost per watt can give you an idea of whether your bid is in the ballpark.

Paying in cash has benefits but so does a no money down lease

If you have the funds, paying in cash is certainly an attractive option. But leases help you get in the door with no out of pocket costs and no responsibility for monitoring or maintenance. PPAs come with contract details that define what you pay for electricity and what happens if you move.

Loans come in lots of flavors

Local banks and credit unions offer a variety of secured and unsecured loan options, while a PACE loan attaches the payments to your property tax bill.

Take advantage of tax credits and exclusions

The federal tax credit has been extended through 2019 but at decreasing rates until the end of 2021.

View Full PDF
Davis runs on 20% renewables
As a community we have exceeded our 2015 solar energy goal of 5%. We are now meeting our electricity demand with an impressive 20% local renewable energy.

As of the end of September 2016, we were at 368 new residential systems for the year!

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