Solar as Standard on Yet More New Homes — Is This Starting to Sound Familiar?


As solar becomes a feature on more new homes, PetersenDean partners with another homebuilder who’s offering it as standard. A clear trend is emerging as homeowners see the value of adding solar to their homes.


Jim Petersen, founder of PetersenDean, likes to say about solar, “It’s the new granite countertop, and people love their granite countertops. But a granite counter can’t pay your electricity bills, solar panels can.”


He makes a good point. Granite countertops are nice, but the value they add to a home is limited. Solar power, on the other hand, not only saves a homeowner money but also adds significant value to a home. So solar is becoming nearly as pervasive as granite countertops as an offering for new homes. We’re also seeing a growing trend of homebuilders including it as a standard feature.


It’s now a selling point to make new homes greener, and solar is part of that package.


We’ve written about several of these developments in recent months. Now there’s a new one from DeNova Homes, which has announced the future opening of its contemporary community of Edgewater at River Islands in Lathrop, California. In a partnership with PetersenDean Roofing & Solar and Canadian Solar, the homebuilder is offering all new homes in the development with solar.


Edgewater at River Islands is one of the few new developments that offer solar as a standard feature rather than just an option — though the trend is growing. The community includes a variety of other eco-friendly attributes, such as tankless water heaters, radiant barrier, cool roof colors, one-coat stucco, 14 SEER air conditioning, energy-efficient appliances, and select recycled framing material.


The new development has 92 lots that provide 1.5 kW Canadian Solar Standard on every home backed by a 25-year warranty. Buyers will have the option to upgrade to 3.0kW or 6.0kW, depending on each home’s plan, elevation, orientation, and available roof space.


Federal tax credits totaling about $2,500 are also available for most homeowners with solar roofing. Estimated five-year savings can total up to $10,296.


“Solar is clean energy and we are striving to build an eco-friendly home as much as feasible. It’s also a great way to reduce utility cost for our homeowners,” said Ryan Parlett, President of DeNova Homes, Inc. “Peterson Dean and Canadian Solar were an easy choice because they come as package and deliver some of the best materials in the industry.”


“We are pleased to be selected by DeNova Homes and PetersenDean. We fully support DeNova Homes’ forward thinking strategy of making solar a standard feature in this attractive new community. Homeowners will immediately benefit from reduced energy bills and the environment will benefit from the proliferation of clean, renewable energy. We hope to see other developers adopt this win-win strategy, which greatly improves the ease of ownership for homeowners,” said Dr. Shawn Qu, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Canadian Solar.


As the price of solar technology continues to drop, more builders and developers are offering solar as standard, and experts expect the trend to continue, added Jim Petersen, founder of PetersenDean.


“As solar panel costs continue to fall, more and more builders like DeNova Homes are offering solar as a standard feature. Consumers are asking for it and building codes are requiring energy efficiency and renewable energy products for new construction,” said Petersen. “Solar power is a logical technology and is becoming so affordable that paybacks can be as low as three years. After that the homeowner owns the power.”