The Three Steps to Going Solar in San Francisco | Solar.com

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The Three Steps to Going Solar in San Francisco


If you live in San Francisco, you’ve no doubt seen the blossoming solar network around you. The process of switching to solar energy might seem daunting, but with a little preparation and some help from Solar.com, it doesn’t have to be.

Here’s a list of the current incentive rates offered by GoSolarSF.

GoSolarSF Incentive Rates

Taking advantage of the solar incentive rates and converting to solar energy in San Francisco is a three-step process: pre-application, application, and incentive claiming.

Here’s an overview of how to switch to solar in San Fran.

The Solar Pre-Application Process With GoSolarSF

First things first. To be eligible for the GoSolarSF incentive, you have to be enrolled or signed up for early enrollment in the CleanPowerSF program, which you can sign up for here. This also means you’ll get a premium net surplus compensation rate if your system generates any excess electricity.

Next, complete an energy efficiency audit. This helps you spot and fill energy leaks. Simple changes like switching to energy-efficient light bulbs, updating to Energy Star-certified appliances, or getting new windows can make a big difference.

This helps you save energy and money right away and reduces the size of the solar PV system you’ll need, which will save money in up-front installation costs.

Selecting a solar contractor is the next step in your journey to solar power. To qualify for the GoSolarSF incentive payments, rooftop solar systems have to be installed by contractors from the GoSolarSF Certified Installer List.

Most contractors apply for the incentives on the customer’s behalf, arrange for connection to the power grid, and apply for local permits.

If you choose to find your contractor through Solar.comr, we’re there with you all along the way, too. We even check in after installation to make sure the contractor is holding up their end of the bargain.

The Application Process with GoSolarSF

Once you’ve completed these steps, you (with the help of your contractor) can submit your application online via PowerClerk. You can access the GoSolarSF documents at www.solarsf.org.

You’ll need to submit these documents with your application:

  • Terms and Conditions (T&C) document with T&C Signature Page and Application Signature Page
  • Documentation of an Energy Efficiency Audit (or documentation of exemption)
  • Solar Purchase Agreement Insurance Policy Declaration
  • Energy bill from within the last 6 months for the site address

Claim Your GoSolarSF Incentive

After your new rooftop solar system is installed, the next step is to submit your incentive claim form (and the required supporting documents) online via PowerClerk.

Your solar incentive payment should be issued about 60 days from submitting your payment application.

You can read all about the entire process and guidelines in the GoSolarSF handbook.

Lower Income Solar Incentives in San Francisco

If your annual household income meets or is below the maximum annual income limits, you could also be eligible for GRID Alternatives programs such as the Single-Family Affordable Solar Homes (SASH) program and for the Low-Income Weatherization Program (LIWP).

Qualifying for solar with GRID could save 50-90% on your family’s electric bill, as you could be eligible for a free or a highly subsidized solar system.

GoSolarSF strongly encourages shopping around for an installer

The GoSolar SF handbook notes that acquiring at least three bids before choosing a solar contractor is a highly recommended best practice.

If you’d like to get those quotes delivered to you easily, Solar.comr is an ideal solution. When you talk to one of our energy experts, be sure to mention you’re interested in project bids from certified installers on the GoSolarSF certified installer list.

With Solar.com, you can sit back and let the bids roll in, and then roll on with the best installer for your solar project. Learn more about our simplified solar bidding process here.

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