It what seems like a match made in Heaven, Nevada County Habitat is partnering with Good Sun on the installation of solar energy systems into the four homes being built at Park Place.
Founded to provide free and low-cost clean, renewable energy to schools, churches, nonprofits and low-income individuals and families, Good Sun – a nonprofit organization based in Grass Valley – completed the installation on house #1 last fall, and is primed to complete installations for houses #2 and #3, which are currently under construction.
Ian Nansen, Construction Program Coordinator for Nevada County Habitat for Humanity affirms that “Good Sun has not only helped procure solar equipment for our houses, but has provided the much needed support for our volunteer construction crew. Because of the shared values between our organizations, this process has been seamless and straightforward.”
Ultimately, Habitat for Humanity and Good Sun support each other in doing what each does best. Habitat for Humanity builds houses as affordably as possible with subsidized solar solutions from Good Sun. The state of California now mandates a solar array on most new home construction. This would add significant cost to a Habitat for Humanity home if it were not, according to Eric Stikes, President & CEO of Good Sun, “for us stepping in to provide free and low-cost solar for the new homes. Now Nevada County Habitat can be compliant with new CA Title 24 regulations, and still offer affordable housing to families on the low end of the low-to-middle income spectrum.”
The market-rate cost for a solar installation can easily be $10,000 or more. This cost would be included into the mortgage Habitat homeowners would pay. For some homeowners this added cost might make the mortgage just out of reach. With the Good Sun solution, keeping costs low, homeowners won’t have to shoulder an excessive 30-year cost burden – and they’ll be able to enjoy the utility cost savings in their forever homes.
For the first Park Place home completed in late 2020, Good Sun designed, procured and delivered the solar array. They coordinated this effort with their installation partner, California Solar Electric, a local worker-owned cooperative. California Solar has offered to continue providing installation support in 2021. “It’s a win-win for us,” says Lars Ortegren, General Manager for California Solar Electric. “We appreciate giving back to the community as a core to our mission being a worker owned cooperative.”
“Nevada County Habitat is so thankful for all of the partnerships we have in the community,” Says Lorraine Larson, Nevada County Habitat Executive Director. “It’s through these partnerships that we as a community will be able to offer more and more affordable housing options. We are thrilled to have this partnership approach with Good Sun and California Solar Electric. We look forward to what’s possible for our homeowners and the community as a whole.”