Lynn and Greg Gill moved into an active adult community in Sun City Lincoln Hills, outside Sacramento, in 2002. When their PG&E electric bill reached $400 in June of 2016, with the hottest part of summer still to come, the Gill’s knew it was time to look for new energy solutions.
As fate would have it, the community lodge at Sun City had recently installed solar panels on newly built carports in their clubhouse parking lot. Mr. Gill said, “Hey, if the lodge is doing it, and our board of directors is doing it, I think it might be something we want to look at a little more seriously.”
The Gill’s asked the board of directors at Sun City which company was responsible for the solar install (and also the construction of the carports in order to install the panels), and were told Sunworks had been chosen.
Investigation Leads to Investment
Greg and Lynn wanted to be 100% positive before making the investment into solar panels, so they put together a list of five solar companies in the Sacramento area, including Sunworks, and launched their own exhaustive investigation.
The Gill’s confessed they weren’t all that particularly “environmentally-minded” when it came to their lifestyle, but with a glaring $400 bill in hand, they had reason enough to look into the possible long-term benefits of solar power.
Greg and Lynn discovered that SunPower panels “were the most efficient” and the best on the market, and to the great pleasure of Mr. Gill, Sunworks not only had what they were looking for in solar panels, but offered a 25-year worry-free warranty which “extended to all of their four main components. Panels, inverter, wiring and [roof] penetrations or leaks.”
With over 30 years experience in the solar industry, Sunworks and their NABCEP certified installers stand confidently behind their work.
The Gill’s compared five different companies. When they were ready to take the next step, Greg set up an on-site inspection with one of the companies. They were informed the whole process would take six-to-eight weeks, from inspection to install. Not knowing any better, the Lynn’s took the other company at their word.
When the technicians showed up, Greg and Lynn were told the technicians would need to drill holes in the roof. Greg was surprised, to say the least, since they weren’t aware of the need to puncture the roof as part of the inspection.
“Whoa, no. Wait. We’re considering this. We would like to advance this as fast as possible, but I’m not in agreement with puncturing holes into the roof,” Greg said he told the technicians. “Even though it’s for your safety, no one alerted us to that fact. That fellow then said, ‘We tell our salesmen all the time to let the client know we are going to be putting holes in your roof.’ I said, I’m sorry. I didn’t agree with that. So he went on his way.”
The Gill’s turned to Sunworks. When they set up an appointment they were told there would be no need for puncturing the roof, and were informed of everything they could expect during their consultation.
“We found with anyone we dealt with, Anthony our salesperson to Steve the sight inspector to all of our install people, they were very upfront about what to expect. When it was going to happen. Kept to the time frames. Really just kept us informed and we really appreciated that,” Greg said.
Sunworks Delivers on Promises
In fact, not only did Greg and Lynn have positive interactions with the sight inspector and the people over the phone, but the Gill’s took their investigation to the next level and visited the Sunworks facility for a tour.
“When we did that tour, and we met the team, and saw the facilities, the warehouse, the number of people involved… All the way from Emil, to Brent, to the people … on the phone to the schedulers, we had a fantastic tour of that. When we came home we kind of both looked at each other and shrugged and said, ‘we made the right decision. Good looking company.’ That built our confidence up to go with Sunworks.”
The installation took two days. The crew was there from morning until sundown, and cleaned up after themselves every step of the way. They kept to promised time frames and everything they said they would do, they did.
“Everybody that we dealt with just had a can-do attitude. They said something was going to happen, and there was follow through. They were very courteous. The install team was very clean,” Lynn said. “We had a two-day install, and part of that was because it was so hot out, and we’re glad that the guys had a little bit of a rest – but they were back early the next morning. The night before, when they left everything was cleaned up …We were really appreciative of that.”
Instead of the six-to-eight weeks the Gill’s were told to expect by a competing company, the whole process, from first thinking about and investigating Sacramento solar panel companies to the eventual Sunworks install, took less than seven weeks. And the savings were immediate for the Gill’s.
Short-Term and Long-Term Savings
“The first two weeks we were hooked up … and running strictly off the solar power we generated. In those first two weeks, compared to the previous month, we cut our electrical use by solar by probably 75%,” Greg explained. “The second two weeks of September we went N.E.M., or Net Energy Metering. At that point we received a bill for the month of September for the first half, which was … $75 … That was an absolute savings.”
With a lower utility bill every month, the solar system generally pays for itself within the first five-to-seven years.
If the upfront cost of investing in solar is a potential hurdle, the CaliforniaFIRST financing plan offers a no-money-down, low-interest option for Sacramento homeowners to help make the transition to solar panels.
The Gill’s have been so happy with their Sunworks solar panels they have gone out of their way to refer as many neighbors and friends as they can to Sunworks, especially when considering the plethora of horror stories out there from people working with other companies.
Greg said, “We heard a lot of war stories about what could go wrong. Bad installs, unfinished, delayed installs. You could just go out on the web and find all that information by [searching], ‘satisfaction with solar installation.’ I didn’t realize it but after that two-day install, which was great for us, our power was running, and we were hooked up utilizing the solar. From point of contact to final install we were blessed.”
Potential Customer’s Concerns: Aesthetics and Critters
Potential customers are often concerned about how their house will look with solar panels on the roof. Greg and Lynn can understand that too, it was a major concern for them.
“It was a big concern also for aesthetics because our panels have to go … in front of the house because it’s south-facing,” Greg said. “And I’ve got to tell you, you can’t even see those the way we’re located and the way the roof’s situated.”
Sunworks worked hard to make sure the Gill’s were satisfied every step of the way. Lynn noted another major concern Sunworks was able to handle with no problem.
“We’ve been known as the ‘bird house on the hill’. We had bad experiences with pigeons over time, so one of our big concerns was we needed [a] critter guard and we needed to make sure we weren’t going to be inviting any [more] creatures. Sunworks worked with us as part of the deal… We didn’t want to go with another critter guard company. We wanted Sunworks to be responsible for the whole project, and indeed they stepped up to that. We definitely needed it and as a result, any of the folks we refer we highly recommend it and most of them go along with that as well.”
Sacramento’s Best Solar Panel Solution
The Gill’s encourage those they recommend to Sunworks to make the switch to solar as soon as possible because, along with the Sunworks 25-year worry-free warranty, the federal tax incentive for homeowners investing in solar power is at a 30% tax deduction, but will slowly decrease over time.
Greg and Lynn Gill didn’t intend to become de facto salesmen for Sunworks, but with such an all-around positive experience, coupled with the immediate and long-term financial benefits of partnering with Sunworks, the Gill’s are eager to spread the word.
“I’m a big believer that if anything, enthusiasm is infectious. We weren’t out to sell anybody on Sunworks. We were out to share our experience and the favorable experience we had. The cost savings. In fact, we sent out numerous emails to people who requested it with detailed information showing [the] five companies we interviewed and [the] cost comparisons. Also bringing out the attributes of 25 year worry-free warranty. The beautiful Sunworks discount. And, I think another big kicker is the tax credit incentive … If they’re gonna do it, it’s better to do it now than wait until after the tax credits and the rebates disappear.”
For those in the Sacramento area on the fence about solar panels, Greg and Lynn Gill are two satisfied customers who did a remarkable amount of legwork before choosing Sunworks. They couldn’t be happier with their investment. Greg encourages those looking into solar panels in the Sacramento area to “do themselves a favor” and check out Sunworks and the benefits of solar energy.
Live outside the Sacramento region and interested in Sunworks’ services? Fear not! Sunworks operates throughout the state of California and is soon expanding to markets nationwide.
To learn more, contact Sunworks at (866) 600-6800 to set up a private consultation, or request a free quote online.