By Rachel Propst, Consultant, RayWell Solar

The biggest objection I have had to overcome in the solar industry, hands down, is that most people believe that solar energy is an “investment” rather than a “no brainer.” Now, I know how that may sound, but we’re living in a world where middle-sized homes are paying upwards of $200 a month for power. Unfortunately, SCE&G charges one of the highest rates in the Southeast, and have increased their rates seven times over the last few years in order to pay for a failed nuclear facility. (read more)

If you’re paying around $200 per month on power, that’s $2,400 per year or at least $60,000 over 25 years! And that is estimated without inflation or utility rate increases, which we know is not the case (again, see SCEG’s plans for rate hikes here). To counter this, a 12-kilowatt solar energy system would offset around 95% of your energy usage, and when financing, your monthly payments will save you around $50 each and every month. Add in tax credits and your long term savings are well over $30,000!

We realize not every homeowner has money to spend on a cash investment in solar. I know I don’t have $30k lying around in my couch cushions. But when you think about financing 100% of the cost of the system, the numbers make total sense:

  1. solar investmentUPFRONT COST: $0. It means you are spending no money to make the switch to solar. No hidden upfront costs. No extra for installation. No money later spent repairing a failed inverter.
  2. MONTHLY COST: Your solar bill + your utility meter fee. Those two payments combined will be less than your current utility bill.
  3. END RESULT: cash positive from day one.


Take a minute and consider your options. As hard as it may be to re-train your brain to think of solar as a direct comparison to SCE&G, the numbers simply do not lie. You cannot go without electricity and you will be buying power for your home or business. And you now have a choice: Pay more for dirty power from the utility or go solar and save money. 

Over the next 10 years, solar will be seen by everyone as a real-world, cost savings solution that allows you to create your own independent power for less money than you’re currently spending on your utility bills. Chances are you know someone who has recently installed solar. And why did they do it? Was it a careful consideration of the pros and cons of this new, risky and unproven technology? No, solar has been around for years. Was it because they are world-saving tree huggers? Probably not. It was more likely just a simple comparison between the utility and solar, and solar won. It almost always does.