We are certainly rich in “insolation” – sun coming in. Hardly anywhere in the US has more. And the cost of solar panels has dropped 95% in thirty years. Sustainable energy is in our reach. 

Homeowners have found installation of solar panels to be an investment opportunity. Return on investment has been about 8 percent.  This will change.  There will be only a short time period now when new solar systems will be "grandfathered' under current net metering rules.  After that, returns to homeowners from investment in solar panels will be smaller.

Reliable estimates of expected returns on investments have been obtained from installers of solar panels.

Technicians For Sustainability (TFS),  a Tucson company, is the installer of solar panels currently most used by residents of The Academy Village. (GeoInnovation also has been popular. Several other companies install residential solar panels in the Tucson area.)  The TFS web page titled Net Metering  explains how that works and describes proposals for changes in fees and payments. The TFS web page titled Get Started outlines procedures, and the page titled Solar Loan describes possible loan and lease agreements 

Owners of two village homes who observed the actual electricity production over two years from panels installed by TFS found it to be about 13% more than TFS estimated.

Homeowners with solar panels on their roofs can be proud that they led the way.  The next stage in the growth of solar energy could bring changes with utilities and large installations playing bigger roles.

A newly conceived system that concentrates sunlight with mirrors could be used to power the village ASA building and heat the swimming pool. It was designed by University of Arizona astronomers Roger Angel and Peter Strittmatter.  It was one of the new developments they described in a talk at the village on Janurary 12, 2017. There are descriptions and photos on their REhnu company website. There would be three 8-mirror units like the one installed at the Green Valley Pecan Company.

We have information about solar panels installed on 25 homes in The Academy Village between 2008 and 2011. Here is a list.

Academy Village Residents: Can you help us enlarge and improve this list? If you are an owner of panels on the list, can you tell us more about them? Their cost? Your annual savings in your electricity bill from the panels? That as a % of your investment?

If you are an owner of
panels not on the list, can you tell us about them? We will not show your name or address. Use Contact Us.

Do solar panels cause roof leaks or other damage? We are not aware of any roof damage or need for substantial repairs caused by solar panels in the village.

Academy Village Residents: Let us know if you encounter any problems.

RESIDENTIAL ROOFTOP SOLAR: How Past Experience Would Answer Questions