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Be a Solar Advocate: Refer-a-Friend

16 Sep

Have you given any thought to Going Solar? Perhaps you’ve even gotten a few quotes, maybe even have a solar installation. We all want to see more people going solar, become one of our Solar Advocates and encourage your neighbors and friends to also consider what solar can do for them. If anyone signs up we’ll give you a generous referral fee.

Here’s 4 ways to Spread the Word

1. Host a Solar Party –  This is one of the best ways of spreading the news, host a solar party at your home, school, church anywhere you like. We’ll bring some wine and cheese, set everything up and print/email invitation, all you to do is invite everyone over, we’ll even give a check for $250 just for hosting. See below for more details.

2. Talk to your Friends and Neighbors  –  Why not spread your knowledge, and let your friends take advantage? If anyone signs up we’ll give you a generous referral fee.

3. Fan us on Facebook  – Show solar and us your support, and click Like.

4. Write us a Review  – Did you have a good experience with us? We’d love a review on Yelp or, or Both!

Solar Party Details

Invite your friends over and Host a Solar Party, learn more about Solar Energy, and earn a little money either for yourself or for your school, church or other venue.

Lease or buy? Roof or ground? What about shading? Spend the afternoon getting to know everything and anything involved in a solar installation from our Energy Consultants.

We’ll create an invitation, provide the wine and cheese and everything that comes with it from water, to silverware to tables and covers, etc…

Just for hosting a party, we will give you or the venue $250 (the party should ideally have a minimum of 5 interested parties attending).

PLUS for every sale generated from your party we will also give you or donate to the venue $1000.

Ready to set up your Solar Party? Call us at (818) 705 3474. Or email us at


Solar Increases Home Sale Prices by $17,000

19 Aug

New research by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory finds that installing a residential solar energy system increases a home’s value by an average of $17,000 or $5,500/kW.

Solar Adds to the Value of Your Home
The study analyzed 72,000 California homes sold between 2000 and mid-2009, almost 2,000 of which had solar energy systems. It found that homes with solar sold for an average of $17,000 more than comparable non-solar homes.

Homes with solar power attracted higher offers from buyers who wanted to save money on utility bills and reduce their impact on the environment. The increase home sale prices was comparable to the average cost of system installation, and solar homeowners also enjoyed the benefit of dramatically lower electric bills.

How to choose a Solar Contractor

28 Jul
California Green Designs is one of many solar installers in the solar installation market, we want to make sure you feel comfortably entrusting your home with us. This can be a tough decision, as you have to balance factors such as price, qualification and experience. Solar PV energy systems themselves are expensive, complex, and could even be dangerous if installed incorrectly – which is why you should use a licensed contractor with their own full time installation teams. Here are 5 things to look for in a solar contractor before investing in solar.

Researching your Solar Installer:

1. Do they have good references from other homeowners?

Word of mouth is priceless and references from past customers can be hugely important in selecting the right solar contractor. Ask them for referrals and do a background check. Also we recommend do a quick check with the BBB and make sure they have a high standing.

2. Is your Solar Installation Company Licensed and Bonded?

Is your Solar Contractor fully bonded and licensed by the State of California, if so, what is the status of the license and have any complaints been filed against the license holder. This information can also be obtained from the Contractor’s State License Board of the State of California Also make sure that your contractor has both a Contractor’s General and Professional Liability Insurance policy, and a performance bond (typically $100,000).

2. Has the Company been around for a while?

You’re going to be entering a relationship with your contractor, they should guarantee their work for ten years. If they haven’t been around for more than a couple, how can you be sure they will be around in 7 years time. Make sure your solar company has a long history in solar to back up their work. This is why it’s also important for the installer to do it’s own installation, and not hire a subcontractor. A sub may or may not have done many solar installations in the past, and this is someone who will be making holes in your roof and working with electricity.

4. Do they Provide you with a Free on Site Estimate?

Each solar electric system is unique. Differences in roof type, orientation, possible shading, electrical interconnection options and customer requirements mean that there isn’t a “one size fits all” solution to solar. A good contractor will not hesitate to offer you a Free Estimate and a custom solar proposal for your home. He or she will also take the time to answer all your questions about a solar pv system that is custom designed for your needs.

5. Read the Contract

Be sure to read the contract carefully,as questions and be especially mindful of a lease contract if you are leasing your solar pv system. Ask your solar contractor to explain lease terms thoroughly, go through other lease options, and make sure you understand the escalator clause and other lease terms. Also make sure buying the system doesn’t make more sense for your situation.

By doing your homework and comparing various contractors, you are more likely to hire an excellent solar company.

Celebrate Arbor Day

29 Apr

The month of April is the environmental kickoff for the green industry. During April we celebrate not only Earth Day but also, and with just as much passion, we mark Arbor Day.  We are all aware of the many benefits of trees such as their absorption of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and their release of oxygen which is vital to all living things.

Trees also provide much needed shade, keep our climate cool, conserve water, improve air quality, and create their own eco systems for animals and other wildlife. In addition to these benefits, trees are also exceptionally beautiful and their presence in Los Angeles gives our neighborhoods amazing beauty and tranquility. They provide cover for paved surfaces, reduce water runoff and reflected heat. This helps lower airconditioning use. Trees improve the curb appeal of a neighborhood, increasing real estate values by 5 to 20 percent.

As a metric of how environmentally beneficial our work is, we have always kept track of the amount of electrical energy that our solar electric installations produce, and compare it with how many pounds of carbon dioxide we’ve offset, that would have been produced by coal for the same amount of energy. We also compare how many acres of trees would have been needed to offset those carbon dioxide emissions, that we’ve essentially eliminated. To date, we’ve installed over 4.5637 Megawatts of Solar. The average energy produced by this amount of power, is approximately 25.1 Megawatt-hours per day. So, each day our systems eliminate enough carbon dioxide emissions that would have required approximately 4,121 acres of trees, or roughly half a million trees, to offset.

When we design and install Solar Electric systems we are especially careful not to disturb trees. If any tree trimming is needed on a client’s property, we always turn to a qualified tree surgeon, such as Daniel Correa Gardening. We think that trees are a vital part of green technology and their strategic placement can help enhance the performance of a solar system. To find out more, read next week’s blog entry on “Solar, Your Electric Bill and Trees”.

At California Green Designs we love trees. We think trees rock! We have them in our company logo and in our hearts. Happy Arbor Day!Majestic Trees

Interested in Solar? Great Part Time Job Opportunity

29 Apr

Promote Solar in Neighborhoods Door to Door.

– Hourly pay rate of $11/hr and $10 for each free estimate scheduled + $125 for each estimate that is closed by our sales team

– Usual shift is 3pm to 7pm

– A reliable form of transportation is required.

– Advancement opportunities (i.e. drivers, team leaders, etc)

– Benefits package (medical, 401K, paid vacation)

– Paid Training

Successful candidates MUST:

– Be able to walk and stand for extended periods of time

– Be 18 years of age or older

– Positive attitude, strong work ethic, and the desire to succeed

Please Send Resumes

Be a Solar Advocate: Show off your Solar Home

28 Apr

There are many great ways to Promote Solar Energy in your Neighborhood, one of the most rewarding is to take part in Solar Home Tours.

CAGD urges commercial and residential owners of solar electric systems to sign up for the 15th Annual National Solar Tour, to host visitors interested in learning more about living and interacting with solar.

Tours take place in neighborhoods all over California, in most locations, the Tour is scheduled to be on Saturday, October 1.

To find out more, or sign up your home or building click here.