By Roy L Hales
SunPower Corp recently announced a three year agreement to install solar panels at Meritage Homes communities nationwide.
In the press release, SunPower mentions “approximately 200 homes.”
Meritage Homes Vice President of Environmental Affairs C.R. Herro said the deal could involve thousands. Meritage built 4,238 homes in 2012 and Herro said they are currently building around 7,000 homes a year. Roughly 10% of their customers choose to install solar.
“I want to make it clear that solar is not just an investment for the future,” Herro said. “Customers who install solar in their homes start saving from day one. Homeowners who choose solar-powered homes receive compelling annual savings on electricity.”
Meritage has been offering their customers a solar option for the past four years
Herro said they decided to sign with SunPower because they make “the most reliable and efficient solar technology available and bring good value to customers”
(That is not simply hype, SunPower’s solar modules hold the record for yield measurements at PHOTON’s Laboratory, whose annual tests have been a solar panel equivalent of the Olympics.)
“Increasingly, homebuyers understand the return on investment that a high quality, energy efficient, solar-powered new home delivers,” said SunPower CEO Tom Werner. “We’re very proud to partner with Meritage Homes, which has made yet another exemplary commitment to its customers and to the communities it serves through this national agreement.”
Herro says Meritage is now America’s 7th largest homebuilder.
They offer a variety of other features such as spray-foam insulation, energy-efficient windows and ENERGY STAR® appliances that use up to 50% less energy and water. Herro said Meritage’s houses are up to 50% more energy efficient than the average home on the market. Around 1% of their customers opt to make their homes zero net energy.
In their press release, SunPower stated that they will begin in California, Texas and North Carolina.
Herro said they are already working together in projects in California.
A quick scan of their existing inventory shows houses in the Bay Area, Sacramento, Bakersfield, and Southern California from LA to San Diego. These are all ares where rooftop solar is popular and where Meritage and SunPower will have projects in the future.