Consumer Complaints and Reviews
Our initial solar contract was delayed by nearly a year, with no word. This caused all kinds of complications, even the lending bank told PetersenDean (Sacramento Office) that if they didn't move they were going to revoke funding (and did). PetersenDean, or partner, hard pulled my credit 5 times in the course of 3 months, pulling my credit score down, then when we went to "finance" again, I was not given as high of a rate. They broke our roof tiles, and refused to correct the problem, even trying to hide the evidence.
Fast forward to now, we attempted to get a "re-roof" from them since they did our solar. We described the above issue to the "new" sales staff. He took our order, quoted us roughly $10K by running it through his system. He then pressured us to get the $1K down payment which we did... then he stopped responding to us. We finally had to email bomb him before he responded. There was a "mistake" and now the $10k job was going to cost $15k (a job that should only cost $5K but for simplicity and warranty reasons on the solar we were willing pay nearly double, but TRIPLE? no way.)
Lastly, he's disappeared again (keeping the deposit) that was nearly 6 weeks ago. I've finally just had to file a dispute with the credit card company. Luckily, I had the forethought to place it on a medium that a dispute could be filed. After giving this company a second chance after an already massive ** up, they did it again. It is a wonder that these guys are still in business. Because of this situation, a signed contract, that they backed out of, and the previous that really messed up my credit until 2018, we're looking for an attorney. I would suggest the avoidance of PetersenDean and any work they do. REALLY, REALLY... You were warned by existing customers. Our dispute has NOT been resolved.
Bait and switch; Worst customer service - The sales guy did his job really well. He promised everything, and I bought right in. Up until now, all of his promises have been no more than soap bubbles. "You'll get THIS MUCH energy from your solar panels!" Well, the engineer came out, and agreed; but then the final report said, "Oh, we didn't realize you had TREES. You'll get 12% less." Well... My TREES don't cover 12% of the roof. Over-sell with the estimate?
"We'll have it done it 12 weeks." Well, SIX MONTHS later, I've just been put on the schedule. "Oh, but it's been raining." Um, how long has your company been doing this? You've never experienced rain before? You didn't realize that you have to plan that into your time estimate? "I'll get you ALL the color samples to choose from for your roof." Well, after I called about six times, I got two books with tiny samples, of some of the colors. Another three calls, and I got a handful of sample boards.
Three more calls, a bunch of emails, and I FINALLY got the color samples... From the basic roofing product. NONE from any of the other lines. "As soon as you pick your roof color, we'll get you scheduled." Well, two MONTHS after I picked the color, I had to call (several times) to even get someone to talk to me. Email after email; call after call, with NO RESPONSE. I had to call and leave angry messages to even get a return.
And, the last straw. FOUR people have been out here, looking at the roof, the driveway, the setup. I finally had someone come out here today to start making the final plans, and... "Oh, there's nothing in this report about poor access for the delivery truck. You have a power line there, we can't bring the truck past that. And your driveway is cracking - you'll have to sign a waiver that we can destroy it and we won't have to pay for it. Otherwise, it'll cost you another $500 for the job."
EXCUSE ME!!! FOUR people have been here already, and now, now that I've given $13,000 non-refundable money (deposit and materials and permits), NOW you start adding other costs. "Oops. We missed that. Oh, you must be joking - no, OUR COMPANY won't take responsibility for missing something. We're going to just charge you MORE MONEY for something WE MISSED in our original estimate." If I had not already paid a ton of money to these people, I would run away as fast as I could.
I was very impressed with the performance of PetersenDean from the beginning of our project to end of our project. Dave **, Monica ** and Amanda ** were amazing. Any questions we had were always promptly answered. The workmanship of both the roofing crew as well as the solar crew was excellent. The professionalism of the entire team assigned to our project far exceeded our expectations.
Our experience with PetersenDean has been a very positive one from start to finish. We dealt with Milo ** & Ryan **. When making large purchases, we always do a lot of research. We spoke with several different solar companies and ultimately decided on PetersenDean. We figured that if there were any roofing issues, they would be best able to handle those.We were very pleased with Milo when we spoke with him. His knowledge (as well as patience) because I can tell you we can challenge salespeople to where they wonder why they have to deal with us. Milo was patient and explained the whole process as well as answered the many questions and scenarios we placed on him. We never spend money without making sure that we absolutely know who we are dealing with as well as what we will be getting for our money.
Keep in mind that my husband always told our son that the only stupid question is the one you don't ask.
After all information had been discussed, the contract involved and in what ways restitution could be made to PetersenDean we felt very comfortable with starting the process. Again, Milo was awesome and very informative. With the payment process Milo put us in touch with Ryan ** in Fresno who my husband has become chatting buddies with because he would be the project coordinator and would handle scheduling of the process from start to end. Milo and Ryan were always available to talk with my husband because he always has additional questions. If in fact there was something they could not answer, they let us know that they would get us an answer and were back to us in 24 hours or less.
When the project started, the installation crew showed up within the 1 hour period that gave us. They actually showed up within 30 minutes of the 1 hours window. They brought in all supplies needed for our project, NO NAILS USED. They completed with the install and an awesome cleanup within 5 and half hours. I also found it interesting that they had solid safety concerns by having tethering attached to their bodies. As a homeowner, accidents on property are always a concern. During the entire process, start to finish, Milo and Ryan checked up on the project to ensure it went the way we had discussed. We very much appreciated their customer service skills. Hard to find these days.
Just a note, getting a project like this done does not happen overnight. They need to plan/get permits/schedule install and then get permission to operate. Even with the length of time, we knew all this up front, no surprises and as the process started to the end, we got phone calls as well as emails advising us where we were with each step. When you ask questions and know the process, it makes it more understandable so you have a good experience. We can tell you that we are very happy and just put in another order with them to install more panels. Decided we wanted to install a Jacuzzi... Milo and Ryan are again involved with this and we know exactly who and what we are getting. Highly recommend them.
The consultant who met with us was very professional and thorough. He explained things in more depth than other companies. The process took about 2 months to get installed and they were very communicative at each step in the process. Very professional operation.
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The organization of the (solar) install to finish was definitely up and down but now I can tell Edison to stick it where the sun don't shine. And that is priceless. Ps. For 10 grand I added another 20 to the selling price of my home.
Salesman did not disclose all options until contract was signed. Now asking for more money for options that most other companies provide. They refuse to work with me and say that every other company is terrible. They are typical used car salesmen. Avoid this company. I already paid and would never go with them if I did this all over again.
Called for appointment on 5/28 to schedule an estimate on a leak coming from my roof. I never received a call from scheduler within the week so I called for help, they had a problem addressing my request, until I called the corporate office & she wasn't helpful either. She referred me back to their call center. I was finally given a order # on 6/8 and told to call Gabriella **. She in turn scheduled me for the following week on Monday, June 13 with a window of 10:00 am till 3:00 pm. I waited all day for Franco to call. When he didn't at 3:30 pm I called Gabriella, whom you can never speak to, always her voice mail. She obviously listened to it, called Franco. He called me to apologize said he'd call prior to coming to my home. Well he shows up at 5:17 pm with 2 children in his truck. I asked him about the children in his truck. He said that he had to pick them up from a church program so I disregard trying to get to the source of my problem.
He mentions what he thinks is the problem & said he have to send it in to his boss. From there they'd estimate my request & send it via email, well it took 3 days after. I called to find out where my estimate was, & along with excuse after excuse as to why I hadn't received it yet till he finally emailed it to me after our phone call. I must say if it's this hard to get a simple estimate, why would I consider this company to do the job. I sum it all up as greed, unprofessional and the worse customer service ever. I felt it only fair to be honest and let those who may be considering this company to take a second look at other possible roofing companies. I am totally discouraged with the timeframe and the inconsideration for my time in not communicating with me as a customer. I had to reach out to them in every aspect of this request.
I had nightmarish encounters with PetersenDean. The third party contractor that installed my upgraded panel box had an employee that was drinking beer while working. One of the people who came to install my panels were drinking beer while working. What if that guy fell off my roof and I didn't know he was impaired and he sued me for medical bills? I would have lost my house because he was drinking. Then of course the thing didn't work right and I had to have them come fix it. When I called and complained that someone was drinking Michelle ** (my "project coordinator") blew me off. Unless you want to lose your house to someone who can't go 8 hours without alcohol, I would steer clear of them!
These guys are great! Jeff walked me through the whole process right over the phone. The technicians who came to my house were fast, professional and most importantly didn't haggle me to sign up for stuff I didn't need. Thinking about upgrading this year to a battery backup now that the system is installed and plan to use these guys again. Hats off!
The initial process was smooth and all went well, until installation. They came out and installed promptly, but the cleanup after install was a nightmare. The same day after install there were metal shards all over the ground as well as nails and other debris, so I contacted them and was told they would have someone else come out to clean up. A guy came roughly the next day and said he took care of it. I came home just to still see metal shards all over as well as nails still falling from the roof. I contact my contact person and at one point was told "we do not use nails. I'm not sure where they are coming from". So I was more or less told that nails were falling from my roof out of no where (raining nails?!?).
I was pissed at that point and finally just told them I'll properly clean the roof myself. Only to later get an email stating that she checked with management and they do remove nails and that she can see them now (magically?) in the photos taken by the install crew. So another guy came out to make sure it was cleaned, a 3rd time when it should have been taken care of from day one. They claim the policy is to now vacuum up the mess instead of just blowing it off the roof, which is good and all but why did it have to take my experience to figure this out? They are the professionals and handled the clean up very poorly. They didn't offer anything to help with the mess they caused and possible injury to my kids if they were to step on the metal or hurt them self on one of the nails.
It was a more or less, "sorry and we'll come back out again to fix it". Try fixing it the first time and doing the job right to begin with! Don't get me wrong, I love having solar, but the people they hire to do work has a direct reflection on the company itself. I needed netting installing to keep the birds from under my solar. They didn't care to offer any sort of discount on this for what they caused during the cleanup. In my experience when you screw up you make it right. While in the end it was cleaned up, this still leaves a sour taste in my mouth when that's all that was done. To keep a customer happy you go above and beyond. I wouldn't recommend PetersenDean based on this and if I wasn't so far in the process when this issue occurred I would have definitely backed out and went with someone else. Proud solar owner, disappointed with the service received.
Zachary ShahanSolar Energy Contributing Editor
Zachary Shahan is the director of CleanTechnica, and his key areas of focus are solar energy and electric vehicles. He has been referenced or interviewed by essentially every major media organization as a recognized global thought leader on solar energy.
PetersenDean is a residential and commercial roofing and solar company founded in 1984. It entered the solar market relatively recently, but is the #1 residential roofing contractor in the U.S., with over 1 million roofs installed.
- Strong roofing track record: With a track record of installing over 1 million residential roofs and leading the nation in that market, PetersenDean is highly trusted when it comes to plopping a solar panel system into those roofs.
- Forget leasing: Despite claiming it offers various financing options, PetersenDean currently has a website banner with the term “solar leasing” in a red circle with a diagonal line across the top. In other words, rather than push you into a solar lease (which is often more costly than a solar loan), PetersenDean seems to be against that financing option.
- Pre-engineered solar power systems: PetersenDean pre-designs its solar packages to fit well with many standard homes. This cuts down on customization and design costs, allowing the creation of a better deal for the customer.
- Financing: The company says it offers several financing products, but doesn’t list them on its website. A solar lease can actually be the best option for some consumers, so they might be better served by going with another solar provider.
- Technology: Pre-designed solar power systems can cut costs, but that also means that an offered system might not be the best fit for your roof – and might not be the exact technology you prefer.
- Best for homeowners, small and large businesses, government agencies and nonprofits, solar beginners and cash and loan consumers.
Question and Answers - PetersenDean
Who is PetersenDean?
- PetersenDean is the largest independently-owned solar and roofing company in the U.S. with nearly 30 years of experience. PetersenDean has a consistent track record of profitability and can offer a fully-integrated roofing and solar warranty that covers the entire roof. Specializing in new residential and commercial construction, PetersenDean works directly with homeowners as well as some of the nation’s largest builders and developers. You’ve likely heard of names like Lennar, Pulte and D.R. Horton; they are our clients. With more than a million roofs under our belt, we operate residential and commercial divisions in five states: Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, and Texas.
Residential roofs aren’t the only thing we do. We work on all sorts of roofing projects, large and small such as the retractable stadium roof for the Florida Marlins baseball team—one of only five retractable roofs in the nation. We do it all—homes, hospitals, shopping centers, schools, museums and more. If big builders and baseball teams can count on us, our neighbors can too.
What do you do?
- The foundation of a great solar system is a quality roof. PetersenDean’s mission is to build world class, American-made roofs and solar roofing systems at the best possible value for our clients. PetersenDean is the only major solar installer that is also a licensed roofer. We are a full-service roofing contractor and solar power installer. We handle estimating, design, permitting, and installation for roofing and solar roofing systems for all our clients. We also provide financing options through a network of partners that can apply to roofing and solar power.
Why use a roofer for a solar installation?
- Solar is a roofing product and should only be installed by a fully licensed and insured roofing contractor. Solar companies do not have the insurance nor the roofing knowledge to protect a roof from water intrusion. We are committed to providing high quality roofs that we stand behind for years! If PetersenDean installs the roofs and solar we offer a ten-year bumper to bumper warranty.
Why go solar?
- Rising electricity rates make solar power a great option for homeowners. Installing solar power on your home can reduce your electricity bills today, and more importantly protect you from future utility rate increases. All in all, home solar power continues to be a great investment. Own your solar power and lock in the lowest electricity price per kWh.
Can I get tax credits if I install solar?
- The current Federal Tax Credit is 30% of the post-rebate price of the solar power installation. This represents thousands of dollars in solar subsidies for homeowners that purchase home solar power.
How much money will consumers save if they install solar?
- Going solar will provide a savings on a homeowner’s electricity bill every month. The savings for an individual or company is calculated by the avoided cost of expensive electricity from the utility. Due to continuing cost decreases in solar equipment, solar power has achieved grid parity almost universally, meaning that the cost of a kWh (1 standard unit of electricity) generated by solar, is the same or cheaper than buying it from the utility. The difference in the cost equals the cost savings. Solar savings applies to virtually any bill range, because solar ownership will lock electricity rates as low as $0.05 per kilowatt hour, which is about 50 percent less than the cheapest utility rates in any part of the country (usually $0.10 per kWh). Looking at a year-long client example, the estimated annual energy savings for one customer with a 4kW system on their home is about $1,980 a year or $165 a month. Additionally, estimated five-year savings could total up to $10,296.
Is it better to lease or own?
- We think it’s definitely best to own. Owning solar maximizes the overall savings to be gained. These savings are significant, since purchasing a system presently pencils out to about 50% less than leasing over the long term and the payback period is now as low as three years. Homeowners who opt for a solar lease or a PPA lose a lot of the benefits that purchasing the system would give them, including any local incentives, the Federal 30% solar tax credit and the renewable energy credits. These incentives are forfeited in exchange for a low upfront or zero down option. Moreover there are many examples calculating the total cost of a 20 year lease vs purchasing the system. For example, if you look at the cost of electricity down to the kWh, the solar leases are also twice as expensive as owning solar plus there is annual escalator built into them. For example, in California, the average utility rate is $0.20 per kWh and will only increase in the future.
Leases start at $0.15-$0.20 with a 2.99% annual escalator (annual escalators act like a compounding interest rate and so the rates will increase about 3% each year). A solar lease starting at $0.18 per kWh with a 2.99% escalator ends up at $0.31 per kWh at the end of the 20-year term. Ownership is locked in at $0.07-$0.08 forever. These numbers don’t lie, which is why PetersenDean believes that owning solar gives homeowners the cheapest electricity that is locked in and all tax credits and rebates.
Can homeowners sell the energy back?
- Yes! Metering policies in some states allow homeowners to send excess electricity back onto the grid, spinning the meter backwards for credits to “shave” electricity from the most expensive tiers off their bills first.
What are the payback periods for homeowners?
- The payback periods have dropped significantly. Meaning, some residents can see their investment completely paid back in four to six years, and then receive free energy worth another five times that amount for the life of the system.
How much does solar cost?
- Generally speaking most homes require between 3 kW – 6 kW solar electric systems. In that range the cost might range between $12,000-$25,000 depending on the system size, equipment and installation factors. The cost to install solar panels varies by how many watts of solar generation are needed over a year. The larger the amount of electricity a home consumes, logically the more solar panels will be required to generate the electricity from solar. Other cost factors vary by project including the specific equipment being installed and other site-specific factors that can adjust the installation work from the solar contractor. The good news is that solar costs have fallen significantly over the last 10 years and homeowners can still claim tax credits that cover 30% of the solar project costs.
How can I pay for solar?
- When deciding to go solar a big question is, "How it should I pay for solar?" PetersenDean Solar4America promotes the benefits of solar ownership which means a cash purchase or taking a loan out for the solar installation. Purchasing home solar power allows homeowners to claim all the tax credits and local rebates which can amount to as much as a 50% reduction in upfront costs.
How does solar affect the resale value of my home?
- It makes your home worth a lot more money! Adding a solar power system adds tremendous amount of resale value and curb appeal to a home. People are keyed in to what solar energy does for their pocketbook and the efficiency of their home. If a buyer has to choose from a home that has low energy bills versus one that doesn't, it's a no-brainer.
How else does solar benefit homeowners?
- Home buyers need to know that the return on investment is significant. Solar is a wise investment that can generate more wealth for homeowners in much of the country than bonds, CDs and other investments. In a total of 33 states, solar offers better returns on investment than 30-year U.S. Treasuries. And in 43 states, solar offers better returns on investment than five-year certificates of deposit (CDs), which typically return just 0.75% annually.
Why have costs gone down so much?
- With solar manufacturing continuing to ramp up production in Asia, the United States and elsewhere, the economies of scale have begun to drive down prices everywhere. Prices have dropped from $10 per watt to $1.50 per watt in the span of five years.
What sets PetersenDean apart from the competition?
- PetersenDean offers our customers four distinct value propositions over our competition.
Stability: We are more than 30 years old now. This long history gives you confidence in our construction experience, peace of mind that our warranties will be honored, and guarantees that we can offer a wide range of payment solutions so our customers can choose a flexible plan for roofing or solar installation without the upfront costs.
Experience: Our company is not only licensed but also certified by major roofing material manufacturers, and our quality management system is National Housing Quality Certified. Our installers are trained, so we will install a quality roof to specification that is competitively priced, using top quality American-made equipment and materials. We work with some of the largest builders across the nation to provide solar, including Lennar, DR Horton, KB Home, Toll Brothers, and Standard Pacific Homes, to name a few. We can provide the same great service, quality and prices to you too.
National buying power of American made products: As a stable, profitable and national company, we leverage our national buying power for the benefit of our customers in all markets that we serve.
Flexible payment plans: PetersenDean’s size and financial strength allows us to work with financing partners that smaller contractors just don’t have access to. We help homeowners put a new roof or save money with solar electricity, and install without the upfront costs. Our Freedom Flex plans have a wide range of options that promote solar ownership, which is the most cost-effective and easiest way to go solar when compared to solar leases or power purchase agreements.
What needs do your product or service fulfill, and how do you fulfill those needs better than your competition?
- PetersenDean’s Solar4America Campaign features American-made solar power packages that are lowering the cost of solar for consumers in all markets we serve. Two key components of Solar4America are Solar Ownership and the PowerSaver Series product line. We have done the math and solar ownership is by far the most cost effective way to go solar and yields the best long-terms savings for the consumer. Ownership means you keep the tax credit, all local solar incentives and lock in the cheapest cost of electricity when compared to solar leases or other financing methods.
PetersenDean has been able to further reduce costs with the PowerSaver Series consisting of 6 pre-designed and pre-permitted solar packages that match up with the most common utility bills (custom systems design is also available). Solar4America is solar ownership with transparent pricing that makes solar easy to understand for everyone.
How does PetersenDean measure success?
- PetersenDean is focused on customer satisfaction through quality construction, using the highest quality materials by trained and certified installation crews. Quality construction that is on schedule and on budget for our customers is the reason PetersenDean has been in business for 30 years, this is about ten times longer than the average roofing or solar contractor.
What’s the most common misconception consumers have about the solar industry?
- Most consumers think of solar power as very expensive and not feasible for residential. The fact is that the cost of solar power has decreased over 99% since the Jimmy Carter administration, and solar power can lock a homeowner’s electricity rate as low as $0.05, which can be about 50% lower than what most utility companies charge.
How has your industry changed in the last 5 to 10 years?
- Price reductions over the past 10 years have had the most significant impact on the solar industry. The cost of solar panels and fully installed solar electricity systems has decreased by 80% over the past eight years, making the cost of electricity generated by rooftop panels cheaper than what the retail rate of electricity, even in states where electricity is cheap.
What is something you wish every consumer knew about PetersenDean?
- We made a commitment to sourcing American-made products and providing all the benefits of solar ownership at the most competitive prices.
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PetersenDean Company Profile
- Company Name:
- PetersenDean Roofing and Solar
- 7980 Enterprise Dr
- Postal Code:
- United States