Solarize Brooklyn CB6 is made possible through a partnership between the City University of New York’s NYSolar Smart Program and Brooklyn Community Board 6 as part of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Rooftop Solar Challenge II.
Solarize Brooklyn CB6 reduces the cost of installing solar by leveraging the collective purchasing power of homeowners and small businesses in Brooklyn Community Board 6. People across the country are buying solar in bulk and saving money in the process, a classic ‘economy of scale’ that works on many levels. Solarize Brooklyn CB6 will help guide groups of homeowners and small businesses as they purchase solar systems together from one of the two Installer Partners, who were selected via a competitively selected by Sustainable CUNY, CB6, and other partners. The benefits include both cost savings and programmatic support.
For example, a large portion of the cost of a residential system is the cost to installers of finding customers. Solarize Brooklyn CB6 will educate local residents and businesses about solar in community workshops and bring pre-screened customers directly to the program’s two Installer Partners. This allows the installers to pass the savings on to participants. Additionally, the support the group provides each participant makes it easier to evaluate quotes and to navigate permit requirements and incentive programs.
Solarize Brooklyn CB6’s Installer Partners offer five tiers of pricing, with the savings increasing as more people commit to the program. Each participant signs their own installation contract with the Partner Installer of their choosing. All participants who sign a contract with one of the two Installer Partners will receive the Solarize Discount applicable to that installer’s pricing tier reached at the close of the program. Participants can either purchase the solar electricity systems directly or enter into a $0-down loan, lease, or power purchase agreement (PPA). Under a lease or PPA, the installer will own, operate and maintain the system, while the homeowner agrees to purchase the solar power at a rate lower than power from the utility, allowing for immediate savings.
NYSolar Smart is a strategic effort led by the City University of New York (CUNY) that supports both Federal and State solar initiatives and works in partnership with more than 40 organizations representing utility companies, installers, government agencies and industry leaders to address the non-hardware or ‘soft costs’ of installing solar. Since 2006, CUNY has led the implementation of multiple state and federal solar grants and was awarded funding through DOE’s SunShot Initiative Rooftop Solar Challenge II to implement solutions to lower the soft costs of installing solar across New York State.