THE DOOR IS OPEN FOR PACE in ALAMEDA

One new and exciting opportunity for homeowners is now they can finance a Solar System through their property taxes! Now available in Alameda county and in most counties in the Bay Area the PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) program gives you the ability to finance certain energy upgrades to your home without having a credit check, no money down, and no banks. The payments will show up as another line on your property taxes and thus are 100% tax deductible! Also, if you decide to move down the road the payments will transfer to the new homeowner! This is a very exciting opportunity and a huge upsurge in Solar generation is expected to take place with more awareness on this financing program. Feel free to visit Californiafirst.org for more details and give us a call for FREE SOLAR ESTIMATE.

  • No CREDIT CHECK
  • NO Money DOWN
  • NO Banks

 

 

Net Metering - What is it?

What is Net Metering?  When your solar system generates energy it offsets the cost of your power usage through your utility company. 

How it works:
When your system is generating more power than you use, it flows back into the utility grid making the meter ‘run backwards' and creating a possible credit to your account.  When you use more energy than your system generates, you take energy from the utility grid. A specific meter will be installed to measure the energy used by your home. 

Net Metering allows customers with solar systems to cut down on energy costs and can even zero out their rates. It also is a great way to measure your energy usage and performance stats of your solar system.

In the Bay Area, PG&E is the major energy provider. They currently provide two ways to apply Net Metering;

- Standard Rate Schedule: cost per kilowatt is a set number and will not change by time of day
- Time-of-Use Rate Schedule: cost per kilowatt varies by season per day. Peak Hours apply.

To read more about these schedules click here

With a Net Metering agreement with your utility company you can elect to receive a monthly bill for your net usage or ‘settle’ your account after a 12 month period.

Have questions about going solar and lowering your energy costs to zero?
Call us today! 510.559.7700

Hurray! Our Pres. Metin Saglam is BPI Certified!

BPI (Building Performance Institute) is an organization spanning all 50 states. Individuals with BPI’s certification are experienced in the standards used for house-as-a-system approach to improving the performance of existing homes – an approach proven to reduce home owner annual utility bills by as much as 20% or more.

ALLY's president, Metin Saglam is now a BPI Certified Professional! BPI certified professionals can help you improve your home's energy efficiency while providing important safety functions such as mold prevention, carbon monoxide testing, and combustion appliance safety checks. They an also help prepare your home for solar, geothermal, or other types of energy upgrades. 

Call us today for a home energy efficiency consultation! 510.599.7700

Bay Area Electric Vehicles - Top Reasons We Buy

The California Center for Sustainable Energy collected data on their Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP) applicants who purchased their vehicle between September 2012 and April 2014. One of the areas they highlighted in this study are the driving factors for choosing to buy an electric vehicle. In the Bay Area, just over 3,000 people were asked and the top reason was savings on fuel costs. With gas prices shooting higher every day this is not a surprise. Other top reasons included; reducing environmental impact and HOV lane access. 

Another important driving factor for Bay Area drivers was the Federal Tax incentive and the CA State Rebate granted to electric vehicle buyers. 40% of buyers noted that these programs allowed them to choose to go electric. Read more about the study, here.

ALLY has a fleet of electric vehicles as well! We can install electric vehicle charging stations for you at your home or business! Give us a call at 510.559.7700! Or contact us for a quote, here

Do you know...about solar panel efficiency?

Solar energy is the new rage! Protect the environment! Big Utility is raising your rates...AGAIN!

But...Do you know what it means when you hear that solar panels produce electricity? Where you may hear from some sales people, "Solar can ZERO out your electricity bill!" It is not an typical result and some customers may not be well informed about the way their PV systems truly work. Some owners take the liberties from having a solar system and think they can use all the electricity they want - risking increased utility bills and lower solar savings!

First, each PV (photovoltaic) module can produce only a limited amount of power, this amount is generally referred to as "Efficiency Rates". Most panels generate anywhere from 16% - 20% of energy, which is why all systems have multiple panels installed. More panels, more energy production. If you use more kilowatts than your system generates, your utility company bills you.

Second, you may receive a Net Energy Metering bill from your utility company at the end of a 12-month period where you are asked to pay for the net amount of electricity used over-and-above the amount of electricity generated by your solar system. Likewise, if you generated more energy than you used over that period, it could fall under your Net Surplus Compensation and you may be eligible to receive a payment. (Each utility company and solar plan is different)

So while you are impressed by the flashy long term savings and environmental impact of solar systems....TAKE NOTE of your monthly kilowatt usage from your PG&E bill and ask your sales consultant what your PV system's monthly average kilowatt production is estimated to be. See the savings sooner and be proactive about your energy consumption by installing the best solar system to fit your needs. 

Don't go into solar uninformed! Call us to get a free consultation and we can answer all of your questions! (510) 559-7700

BIG DEAL: White House goes big on climate change policy

Today was a BIG move in to stop climate change. Obama took the drastic measure and bypassed Congress with a plan that forces power plants to cut their emissions by 30% in the span of 15 years. 74% of total CO2 emissions in the U.S. in 2012 is a result of coal, compared to electricity generation from natural gas and petroleum. This is one of the biggest actions taken by the U.S. government — and the biggest taken by any U.S. president — to slow climate change.  

With big climate issues coming to the forefront of the world's attention, this is hardly a surprise. Just this May they released the news of the dramatic speed in which the Antarctic ice sheet is melting, read more here. Scientist can see no way to stop the melting and fear major and  environment damaging sea-level changes

The White House also released the results of a study done on climate change which highlight the measurable impact carbon is having on our environment, http://nca2014.globalchange.gov

Though there are voices trying to dampen the validity of these climate concerns, it is difficult to ignore what is happening across the planet and here at home. It is past the time for action and with this policy change we hope that the movement keeps growing for renewable and clean energy such a solar, wind and nuclear. 

ALLY is doing their part in helping communities around the Bay Area go green and reduce their carbon footprint. Installing solar systems and helping make homes more energy efficient. 

BPI and Home Performance Standards

The Building Performance Institute, BPI is a national organization for residential energy efficiency and weatherization retrofit work. Their standards are noted by the US Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency as well. The BPI Standards program is an industry leader in standards. Individuals that have been trained, tested and certified to BPI’s nationally recognized standards use the house-as-a-system approach to improving the performance of existing homes – an approach proven to reduce home owner annual utility bills by as much as 20 percent or more.  

Our company president, Metin, is undergoing BPI’s certification process and wanted to share the knowledge he’s getting…

“BPI approaches entire building as a whole system. Integrating science with practices. The idea is to make our living environments healthy, safe, energy efficient and comfortable for the occupants. Nearly 90% of the homes in Bay Area are not up to BPI standards in safety. If there are small children in the home, the problem can be considered more serious. Most of the new constructions do not qualify or pass the BPI test.

For example: Turning up the thermostat to warm up our living space can cause the furnace fan to force the air out from our room (depressurizing) which can allow air from the attic and crawl space into a room. Particles of dirt, chemicals and rodent feces can be found in that air, too.  Disgusting! Think about the thousands dollars we spend on beautiful remodeling jobs with high-end appliances and high quality materials.  All in a home that still may be an unhealthy living environment for you and your family.

At that point choosing a well-trained contractor is key for safety and health of our little ones and ourselves. Making contractors get the certification before starting a new building will help enormously to improve the well being of our lives."

More on BPI's standards for home performance to come...stay tuned

San Jose, Ca is #4 in the US for Solar Installations!!

The report, "Shining Cities: At the Forefront of America's Solar Energy Revolution," has recognized the top cities in the US for solar power!  San Jose is in the top five at #4! San Francisco came in at #9! Clean energy is growing in the Bay Area!! Read more about it this report in, HuffPost.

With climate change becoming an ever looming danger, we hope more cities move towards renewable energy sources like solar. San Jose not only has a lot of its rooftops covered in solar panels but some of their government buildings have solar systems, too!  We are proud to have been a part of this solar win.....ALLY has installed solar systems on San Jose rooftops for years!

Congratulations, San Jose!

 

Clean Energy - Today and Tomorrow

Yesterday, May 8th, Obama gave a speech in Mountain View, Ca. and reinforced his goals to make clean energy a bigger part of our future. The White House even has its own newly installed solar panel system on the roof! An example to the country that solar is the present as well as the future. Energy Department recently launched a $15 million-dollar program, “Solar Market Pathways”, to promote solar energy for commercial and government buildings. Read the Washington Post article, here

Clean energy and solar expansion is growing, California has its own state incentive program to help make solar panels affordable to residents and business owners. PACE will soon be implemented across all counties to help homeowners. San Francisco and Sonoma counties currently have programs in place. ALLY is staying on top of new solar energy programs and rebates...contact us for more information. 

PACE Financing: Residential Solar Energy for CA!

California is a major participant in the PACE program! Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing, an alternative to a loan and helps property owners manage the barrier of high up-front energy equipment and installation costs.

PACE financing ties the cost of home improvements to the property itself which has statistically shown to be a value-add when reselling your property.  When a property owner participating in a PACE program sells the property, then the repayment obligation legally transfers with the property. The benefits of PACE financing include long-term, fixed-cost financing; loans tied to the tax capacity of the property rather than to the owner’s credit standing; a repayment obligation that legally transfers with the sale of the property; and potentially a deduction of the repayment obligation from federal taxable income, as part of the local property tax deduction. Read more here

ALLY can help you get PACE for your solar energy system! Contact us today for info.