Report: Installed solar costs dropped 5% as consumers search for best value

Dive Brief:

  • EnergySage's second Solar Marketplace Intel Report showed a drop in average solar prices across the United States, showing a nearly 5% drop in the second half of 2015 from $3.86/watt during the same period in 2014 to $3.69/watt, PV Magazine reports. 
  • Last year's report by the online marketer predicted customers were moving more towards direct ownership of solar panels rather than through third party ownership, which was affirmed through this year's data that saw less than 8% of EnergySage consumers choosing to lease systems through a third party. 
  • The report further showed consumers were more inclined to "shop around" for the best price for their panels, with 44% of those surveyed saying "best value" was their priority. One-third of consumers joined EnergySage after getting an installer quote, showing they were shopping, the report noted. 

Dive Insight:

PV Magazine pointed out that as the solar market grows, so does information available to note trends and developments, underscored by EnergySage's latest report showing that solar pv is indeed declining in price. 

Data from the report showed increasing solar market consolidation among module makers and inverter manufacturers as well; despite more than 40 module brands offered by EnergySage, over 60% of the marketplace quotes went to just five: SolarWorld, LG, Canadian Solar, Hyundai, and Hanwha.

The report also showed a range of installed costs, with some as low as $3.21/watt, the news outlet pointed out. Texas had the lowest installed cost at $3.21/watt, while New York bucked the trend in low prices at $3.82/watt, the report said. 

Another report from the Department of Energy said the potential technical installed solar capacity for U.S. rooftops is 1,118 GW, with an annual generation potential of 1,432 TWh, which is roughly equal to about 39% of the nation's electrical generation. 

Filed Under: Solar & Renewables Distributed Energy Corporate News
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