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Alternative Power Solutions Completes Solar Install and Helps Homeowner Make Sense of Solar Refinance ROI

Houston, TX, September 09, 2011 --( Texas summers are relentless, and many homes are not up to the challenge of keeping the residents cool while keeping electric bills low. This poor combination of heat and inefficiency led a Houston family to seek an investment that would provide them with financial security and stability during some tough economic times.

While reading an article on hyperinflation, Matt Parrott’s curiosity in residential solar power was once again sparked. He had considered it before, but experienced severe sticker shock 3 years ago when he first investigated the proposition of adding solar to his Sugar Land residence. With energy cost concerns in mind, Matt and his wife Tiffany decided to reconsider solar as a possibility, providing the investment met certain conditions. Aside from their mortgage, the electricity bill was their largest and most inconsistent monthly obligation, so they decided to take another look at solar generation.

As a family who is conscious about their energy consumption, they made a few efficiency improvements to their residence before adding solar. These upgrades included retrofitting their home with improved insulation, radiant barrier, a high seer climate control HVAC system, solar attic fans, and solar film on their windows to reduce their homes electrical usage. Solar power seemed like the next feasible step because it presented the best opportunity to immediately and consistently offset their monthly power consumption, especially in months with lots of sun and the associated heat.

Because being cash strapped prompted the idea for solar in the first place, Matt believed it made little sense to stress the family financially any further. A solar array therefore had to be both affordable and attainable. The family also wanted to invest their own money, so the ROI (return on investment) had to be reached in a reasonable amount of time. Lastly, a system that could provide 100% of their energy would have been way beyond their means, so they decided that a reasonably priced system should generate at least 1/3 of their predicted usage. They also decided that any production less than that would not be worth the effort.

With record low interest rates and affordability at the top of the list of favorable conditions, getting a loan seemed like a great idea. The family found relatively low rates and reasonable terms through a credit union which refinanced their second mortgage and allowed them to build in the cost of the solar project. Because the interest rate on their home mortgage was reduced by 3%, their monthly payment only increased by $70, and they received a federal tax credit which equaled 30% of the total solar project cost. The additional $70 per month also increased the amount of mortgage interest paid per year, which is currently deductible from their income taxes. All these factors helped contribute to satisfy the requirement of affordability, as they now pay a small fixed amount for energy produced, rather than pay a retail electricity provider an amount that can be difficult to predict.

The process of adding solar to the Parrott family residence allowed them to build equity, improve the value of their home, and has the added benefit of a significant amount of fixed cost solar generation for its lifetime. Because they wanted a reputable company to install the solar system, they chose a solar company that provided references, was punctual, and responded to questions and problems throughout the shopping experience. This company was Houston based Alternative Power Solutions (APS).

Since APS installed the solar system in November of 2010, the 4.62 kilowatt solar system has been producing between 400 and 500 kWh per month, which at the high end equates to slightly less than $70 a month. However, the solar system allowed the Parrott family to claim a $6,600 tax credit and provided a tax exempt increase in their home’s property value of over $12,000. In addition, the solar system is predicted to produce over $44,000 in energy savings over its lifetime. These measurable benefits added up to over three times to cost of the solar energy system.

In keeping with the family’s values of good stewardship and personal responsibility, it’s icing on the cake for this economically conscientious family that their new solar array will save an estimated 208,000 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions over thirty years.

Alternative Power Solutions Corp. is a Houston based premier commercial, residential and utility solar electric (photovoltaic) design, installation and product distribution firm serving the Southwestern US. With a staff of electricians, engineers, and NABCEP certified solar installers, APS provides customers with a turn-key solar solution, including affordable solar leasing and financing options.

The mission of APS Solar is to provide the highest quality alternative and sustainable energy system design and installation to the market. Our state of the art systems enable facility managers and homeowners to reduce their energy costs, overall dependence on fossil fuels, and their carbon footprint.

Recent notable projects include the Dallas Children’s Theater, Texas State Aquarium, Montgomery County Library and Admin Building, Fort Bend County Parks, Houston’s Habitat for Humanity and the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame.

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Alternative Power Solutions
Emilie Holden

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