By Sharon Derby, Solar-Powered Homeowner and Director of Marketing & PR for Solar Energy World

As they say, time really does fly! It’s now been a year since my husband and I had an 8.48 kW solar system installed on the back of our house by Solar Energy World. Since we purchased a new roof at the same time, we took advantage of the same-as-cash option for the solar panels from GreenSky so we could focus on paying off that loan within the year. It was a good plan because autumn was three months of shorter days, so our electric bills were only slightly lower, as we had expected.

In early winter we received a $1,000 check from Anne Arundel County just for going solar. Since Tika Uzzell at Solar Energy World had submitted the grant application to the MEA for us, we had long forgotten that it was coming. She also took care of setting up our SRECs (Solar Renewable Energy Certificates) account with SolSystems which was very helpful since the busy holiday season was upon us!

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Ridiculously low electric bill for the middle of summer!

Spring brought daylight savings time and measurable breaks on our taxes for upgrading our old roof and installing the 32 solar panels. We also added a large sail shaped shade awning above our master bedroom windows to cut down on the full sun that side of the house endures all year long which helped keep the house from heating up as fast as it used to.

Over the summer, our BGE bills were jaw-droppingly low so we have been bragging to anyone that will listen that we paid less than sixty dollars for all three months! Our carbon footprint is definitely much lower than ever but we are far from perfect. We love racing around the Bay on our speed boat, Bob drives a big truck and I have a hard time remembering to turn off lights and electronics when I leave a room.

However, twelve months of producing clean, renewable energy feels great and the savings just confirm that we made the right decision. Our only regret is that we didn’t go solar much, much sooner!

To read part one of my solar journey click here.

Have questions for me? Send me an email: [email protected]