SolarCity Continues Tackling Low Solar Adoption in Texas by Partnering with Another Homebuilder


SolarCity teams up with another Texas homebuilder, CastleRock Communities, offering solar power as an option on every new home in CastleRock’s 42 communities in the Austin, Houston, and San Antonio areas.

Texas has a huge potential for solar energy and could be a major player in clean energy generation. The state has over 200 days of sunshine and large amounts of land. If you include all the usable land (not just rooftops) in Texas, it has twice the solar potential of any other state, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). The reality, however, is that solar adoption is lacking in Texas. According to the SEIA, Texas ranks 13th in the country in installed solar capacity. In 2012, Texas added 51MW of solar electric generation capacity, ranking it 12th nationally.

Many businesses have set course to change this, including Admirals bank, Green Mountain Energy, and SolarCity (Nasdaq: SCTY).

Earlier this week, SolarCity announced a partnership with Texas homebuilder PSW Real Estate, offering solar power as a standard feature on every new home in two communities in Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas. SolarCity provides homebuilders with full-service solar services that include customer service, real-time monitoring, and repairs for their homebuyers for the lifetime of the system.

Today, SolarCity announced it has teamed up with another Texas homebuilder, CastleRock Communities. Through the partnership, SolarCity is offering solar power as an option on every new home in CastleRock’s 42 communities in the Austin, Houston, and San Antonio areas. 

For customers who choose to go solar, the size of the array will range from 2kW to 6kW, depending on the home’s size. SolarCity provides free installation, and the solar electricity payment is rolled into each customer’s mortgage payment.

“[We are] very excited about the opportunity to provide our customers with the power to choose what kind of energy they prefer for their new home,” said Lance Wright, EVP/Partner for CastleRock Communities. “We’re also pleased to offer a new way for our homeowners to save, along with the chance to see how solar works first hand.”

Walter Cuculic, SolarCity’s national manager of Builder Programs, added: “Our solar offering will give CastleRock customers greater control over their electricity bills. Homeowners will have the opportunity to use clean, renewable energy for years to come and may be able to count on a stable electricity bill, even if utility rates rise.”

Every standard 4kW system will cut the homeowner’s carbon-dioxide (CO2) emissions by more than half, according to SolarCity.

CastleRock Communities offers a variety of options with three different series of homes. Their entry-level homes for first-time homebuyers, homes suitable for growing families looking for a little more space, and homes from 2,300 to over 4,000 square feet are available with different sizes of solar systems: 2, 4, and 6 kilowatts, respectively. The two larger types of homes are also Energy Star Certified.

SolarCity has recently been providing a number of innovative solar options. Last week, the company announced a partnership with BMW to offer owners of the new BMW i vehicles exclusive access to SolarCity’s most affordable solar service option. And in a major advance for the industry, the solar installer just completed the solar financing milestone of a solar securitization offering — the solar industry’s first step toward securitization going mainstream. Solar securitization will help lower borrowing costs and provide a funding source for residential, commercial, and utility-scale solar projects, resulting in billions of dollars of new potential financing for the solar industry.