Homebuilders, did you know that only 6% of homes in the US had solar panels in 2019.
But over the past year, 46% of American homeowners said they’d considered installing them?
That is significant.
But this uptick didn’t come out of the blue.
Concerns about climate change and rising energy costs have people looking to reduce their fossil fuel use and lower their utility bills.
Moreover, in California, most new residential units, including multi-family complexes up to three floors, must now have solar panels installed during construction.
And other states are likely to follow suit.
As a builder, you want to construct homes you know will sell.
You want to give buyers what they want without raising costs too high for market conditions.
You also want to make sure you can turn a profit.
This guide will walk you through what you need to know about solar power new home construction projects.
Solar Power New Home Construction: Two Options for Installation
Though solar energy has skyrocketed in popularity, not every buyer wants panels on their new home.
Some don’t think they can afford it, while others don’t know enough about it or prefer other energy options.
Fortunately, you can design new projects to meet the needs and desires of a wide range of buyers.
Build Homes with Complete Solar Power Installations
For those in the market to buy a home that can run on solar energy from the start, you can construct homes that include everything they need.
Fully functioning solar power new home construction builds are wired for solar panels, may include battery backup systems, and have the panels on the roof.
They are already connected to the grid so that buyers can take advantage of the Sun’s energy immediately.
Build Solar-Ready Homes
When you build a solar-ready home, you construct it using the design features of a solar house and with everything included except the panels.
That way, it’s easy to set up the system down the road, either when the new owners decide they are ready for it or when future buyers want to add solar power after purchasing the home.
Solar Power New Home Construction: Considerations for Building
The Sun produces more energy in an hour than humans use in an entire year.
When you design homes that can take advantage of this incredible power source, you provide homeowners with the opportunity to reduce their environmental and carbon footprint while lowering their energy costs.
Building solar-powered or solar-ready houses requires additional considerations in the design and construction process to reap the most significant benefits from the Sun’s free and clean energy.
Designing the Home
To optimize energy collection and efficiency, you need to think about how you design homes and communities, planning your projects around the Sun and panels.
Consider the following when planning your solar power new home construction designs:
- Structure orientation: Ideally, you want houses with south-facing roofs to capture the highest energy levels. Buildings that have an east-west direction are about 80% as efficient.
- Roof design: Even if you are building a solar-ready home, the roof design should maintain uninterrupted space for panel installation. Place all vents outside or in clusters that allow panels to remain together. It makes module installation easier and looks better, too.
- Shade prevention: The roof area that holds the solar equipment needs to be free from shading for optimum performance. When designing lots, landscaping should be chosen and placed bearing this in mind.
Planning the right design is one of the most important considerations for builders who work on solar power home construction projects.
Choosing the Equipment
Another essential consideration for solar energy homes is the equipment you need for the project.
Everything from the panels to the cables needs to perform at the level required to maintain safe and efficient energy production. You have decisions to make about inverters, modules, and storage.
They don’t all perform the same way or have the same level of quality.
Even high-quality items can have issues, so you may want to pay close attention to warranty length and conditions.
When choosing products, consider their reliability and performance rather than cost alone.
Installing the System
Solar power new home construction projects require industry-specific knowledge.
You can hire professionals on your crew who have the right experience and training for these builds or provide your team with the training they need for solar installations.
Alternatively, you can partner with a solar company that can walk you through the entire process, including helping you design the systems, obtain the proper permits and install the equipment.
Solar Power New Home Construction: Benefits for Your Business
Numerous state governments are pushing for renewable energy policies and mandates.
When paired with consumer demand, the two factors make it increasingly likely that builders will need to incorporate solar into new builds to keep up with the changing times.
But there are benefits to adopting solar ahead of the curve, including:
- Selling homes for 4.1% more than those without panels
- Offering houses that sell as much as 20% faster
- Attracting a new base of customers
- Contributing to a growing movement for clean energy
- Helping the environment while increasing your profits
When you build residential units that include solar energy, you also can feel good knowing that you are increasing your customers’ energy independence and providing them with a reliable and cost-effective energy source.
Solar Power New Home Construction: Resources for Builders
Unbound Solar has the resources you need to get started if you’re looking to add solar power to new home construction to your project designs.
When you partner with us through our Builder Program, we’re with you throughout your projects, from design to permitting to installation.
When homebuyers purchase your houses, they get our free lifetime support, ensuring help is just a phone call away.
Get in touch with us today to schedule your free consultation!