Overall Score

497 User Reviews

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Founded in 2006, SolarCity is a solar company that strives to help people take control of their energy costs and decrease their carbon footprint. SolarCity is one of the largest solar companies in the United States, but is bigger always better? Read on to find out.

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The Good

  • Payment Options to Best Fit Customer Needs
  • Contract Transparency
  • State Availability

Payment Options to Best Fit Customer Needs

SolarCity offers a variety of payment options to help homeowners take advantage of solar energy in a way that fits their unique needs and budget. Available payment options include leases, Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs), outright purchases, and loans.

SolarCity's lease program, SolarLease, allows customers to rent their solar panel system from SolarCity and pay a fixed amount each month. SolarLease customers receive free system maintenance for the entire length of their lease.

SolarCity's Power Purchase Agreement program, SolarPPA, gives customers the opportunity to lock in a monthly rate for the term of the agreement without any price hikes. One advantage of choosing SolarPPA is that SolarCity will install the system at no upfront cost to the customer. However, keep in mind that with this payment option, SolarCity owns and maintains the system, which prevents the customer from claiming federal and state incentives.

Customers who decide to purchase their system outright or with a loan will most likely receive long-term savings, as well as 20 years of monitoring and maintenance for their system.

Contract Transparency

SolarCity has an open book philosophy in regards to contracts, which is helpful for customers who would like to have all the information before they consider working with SolarCity. Some contract terms include locked-in rates once the agreement is signed, roof repair in the event of damage during installation or removal, and moving options if a customer decides to sell their home before the contract expires.

State Availability

SolarCity is considered one of the largest solar providers in the country and currently offers residential solar systems to customers in 20 states, making it possible for consumers nationwide to go solar with SolarCity. Operational states include Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Washington D.C., Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas, Utah, Vermont, and Washington.

The Bad

  • Installation Issues
  • Customer Service Complaints

Installation Issues

Many SolarCity customers who have left reviews on our site have expressed dissatisfaction with their system installations. The problem seems to deal more with delayed and incorrect installations rather than issues with the product itself. 

Customer Service Complaints

Customer service is another area where SolarCity has received several customer complaints.  Many customers claim that they have had trouble trying to get email and phone responses from SolarCity, which can be frustrating for those who need assistance.

The Bottom Line

Overall, SolarCity is a large, well-established company that offers a wide variety of payment options. However, many customers have reported issues with installation and dissatisfaction with the company's customer service.

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