We are so happy to hear that you had a great experience with us, Danielle. We work very hard to provide top of the line service and are thrilled to hear that you received our best. Thank you for helping create a greener environment and thank you for choosing to do so with SolarCity!
Original review: April 30, 2016
I signed up for Solar City 4 years ago (lease) and I recently had additional panels installed because of SDG&E's upcoming rate increase. Although I would have loved to purchase solar panels, it was just not affordable for me. There were no surprises for either installation. Everything was explained and communication from Solar City was consistent. My first install was on the garage so the county inspected the work. The latest install went on the house. Appointments for installation happen very quickly after the lease is signed. It is scheduling the inspections that seem to take a lot longer--anywhere from 2 weeks to a month. This has NOTHING to do with Solar City (read some complaint reviews blaming Solar City for long hair for inspections).
Unbeknownst to Solar City, the state had to do the inspection. The county inspector who was sent out is how we all learned that the inspection had to be done by the state because it is a manufactured home on a solid foundation. Right then, I knew this was going to be a long wait. Aaron ** and his team were in constant contact with the state securing the proper paperwork needed and getting contracts to me from the state declaring that I am the owner and to verify serial and model numbers of the house. It was a 2 month wait to get an appointment with a state certified inspector and Solar City was in constant communication with me apologizing which they did not need to do because they do not have control over the inspections.
No need for me to me to be upset with either the state or SC because I have no control over them. SDG&E approved turning on the second system within 2 days of the inspection (they can take up to 2 weeks, also). Now I enjoy seeing all my bar graphs in the negative. Although I pay more for the lease in the winter months than I would electricity (lease is fixed), I pay a third of what I would pay for months (June to October) for electricity. Last year, my final SDGE bill was $40.
Solar City is by far the most professional business I have worked with from the sales agent to the technicians and electricians, and follow up technicians. Family and friends who have signed up with them say the same. I got solar so I could reduce my electric bill but also so I know I am helping the environment. So, even though I know I am paying more overall with a lease as opposed to buying, I know I am making a difference environmentally. Solar City made it possible for me to get solar with their lease program.
First of all, the entire process with SolarCity is very well-thought out. It's seamless. We chose to lease our system, and SC took care of all the permits, upgrades, inspections. Our house and roof are complicated - it's a big house with very steep roof pitch. The placement of panels is strategic. And what was best was throughout the months-long process, every single person who came to work on our home was extremely professional, upbeat, and everything was explained as they were doing it. We are disappointed it's January of the rainiest winter in years, so we aren't immediately seeing the full value of solar, but even on some winter days, we've produced more than half our usage. I have nothing but positives to describe our experience with SolarCity. And, it makes us feel good that we are doing something for the environment, as well!
I do not understand why nothing is being done to STOP this company from doing business in the state of California. I have read review after review of how horrible this company is and how horribly they treat their customers yet nothing is done about it. I complained to the Better Business Bureau, which by the way gives them a rating of A+ even though most of the reviews on the website are negative, and have heard nothing! I complained to the Public Utilities Commission only to be told they have no jurisdiction over solar companies. No wonder they feel they have the right to treat all of their customers like crap, no one is overseeing them.
The sales rep for this company gave us a list of monthly payments for our 20 year contract which increased by $5 or $10 dollars each year. They started out at $75 a month and when the year was up went up to $181 a month. Our contract says that monthly payments cannot go up more than 2.9% each year. Does this sound like an increase of 2.9%? Apparently, they can charge you ANYTHING that they want and there is NO ONE to help you battle with them.
I guess the only thing we can do is stop paying the outrageous bills and group together and take them to court. It would be cheaper than what we are going to end up paying this company after twenty years. I would love to get a group of unhappy customers together but I saw in a previous review that the email had been blocked. I will try. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT get solar from this company. You will truly regret it. Trust me when I tell you that I do. This company will bankrupt me!
Shameful is the word that comes to mind when I think of SolarCity's billing practices. It turns out that they bill you for the energy that you generate. Some months it's greater than the interest payment on your loan, some months it's smaller. So far, ok. The problem is that, as you start on your loan (at least in Denver), you will never get "right side up" on your loan. By that, I mean that in the winter months, I generate such a deficit level that the accrued interest grows. It grows at such a level that, even in the summer months I can automatically pay down the interest. The result is that, for the past and first 18months of the install, I have only paid interest, no principal.
So, ok... I can even accept that. Here's the ** part... SolarCity provides no way to make additional, incremental monthly payments toward the principal. For example, say you wanted to send an additional $25 bucks per month on those months that you're deficient. You can't do that. In fact, it's worse. The minimum amount that you can pay down principal is $500. So, instead of paying, say, $25 for the 6 winter months ($125), I now have to pay at least $500. PER YEAR.
The sorry part is that this is just bad business on SolarCity's part. Why would you, as a company, not accept small payments of principal? What is going to happen is that folks will pay off the SolarCity loan with a HELOC (or something), and SolarCity will lose the interest payments on their loan. In any event, I'm very dissatisfied with the situation. I thought that the company was progressive and I'm doing my part, but they're really just like any other ** financial organization (credit card, bank, etc).
What a disappointment!!! These guys came to our house a couple of years ago and said we needed a new roof for it was "CalShake" and quoted me 16,000 for the roof only. So we passed it up. Just a month ago we received a call from SolarCity saying that they had a new program and they would do our roof for free. We just needed to sit down with them. My whole thing is don't waste our time with another appointment knowing that you can't deliver. Long story short, some guy named Pablo said that he needed his supervisor's approval and would get back to us.
Well, he never returned our calls, not even a courtesy call. I was at Home Depot a couple of weeks ago and the SolarCity people there sent him an email regarding the visit. We still haven't heard from him. I hate these type of sales people. I don't expect anything for free and I don't mind paying for something. Just be honest, give us options and don't leave people hanging. I contacted Petersen Dean a few days ago and they were straightforward giving me a ballpark for a roof and panels, we have an appointment with them in a couple of weeks. I guess Petersen Dean will be getting our business.
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Factual basis uncertain
Over a year ago I had the panels installed. During the installation I lost power in my kitchen, attic and workout room. I remember this clearly because my mother was cooking and she couldn't finish because we have an electric stove. I called to complain and they did some rewiring to get the stove working as a temporary fix. Needless to say the attic and workout room is still without power over a year on. I have escalated this situation over and over again only to be told that based on their investigation, the loss of power was not caused by the installation. Logic being that they didn't have to touch that line. Even attempts to cancel my contract with them is being resisted tooth and nail. It has been a terrible ordeal but I am preparing a lawsuit against them which should resolve this issue once and for all.
Do not do this. We went through the whole process that was said to be only a couple months and it took almost ten. The sales consultant Kane ** told us during the consultation on numerous occasions that there was no contract and we could cancel anytime. Come to find out he lied, that was lie #2. He said that SolarCity would pay the cancellation fee from our previous electric supplier, that was lie #3. Said if the roof needed repaired SolarCity would remove the system for free, lie #4.
After I called to get the system removed I found out we were locked into a twenty year contract and could not get the system removed. Thought there was no contract Kane? Finally got ahold of a manager after getting the runaround and having to request a copy of this so called contract and was told she could do something about it. Well, Hazel ** did nothing as well. We got the runaround for months, they stopped answering phone calls and not returning emails.
It's all excuses with this company. They only look out for themselves. The website says one monthly fee, wrong, you pay for what you produce and they soak up the benefits. We went from $60- $80 power bills to over $150 total between the two power companies we now are required to have (SolarCity and MP2 energy). They keep saying they sent us a copy of everything and we should have it but we never got a copy of the contract that we were told did not exist until I requested one. The website also says tax credits, well there are but not for you, SolarCity soaks them right up as well. There is supposed to be a $200 referral bonus, you'll never see it, don't count on it. Bottomline if you like to be lied to and getting ran around this is the company for you. If you want solar power save up and get your own system. Don't fall for their lies and Tesla references. IT'S A SCAM.
BAD BUSINESS. I DON'T recommend SolarCity to anyone. It has been a nightmare with the SolarCity experience. SolarCity installed 60 solar panels on my roof on January 20, 2017. The following day, it rained. I found out there was a leak in my master bedroom, and the walls of the drywall started to get signs of moisture. My theater room ceiling drywall started to have water marks, and looked like it was ready to fall at any time. I also found out that I had 6 to 8 other leaks inside my attic right below where the panels had been installed. SolarCity came to the house that night and tried to patch up holes on the roof and placed a tarp on my roof. When they left, the leak in my master bedroom and the leaks inside the attic were still there. I then found more leaks in the attic.
I called ServPro, a water restoration company, to come to the house and check for moisture. Using their infrared camera, they found there was moisture all over my second floor. My second floor is 2300 sq. ft. My whole house is 6000 sq. ft. They said that they would have to remove the drywall and I would have to pack up most items on my second floor to store it somewhere else for them to work.
SolarCity promised to come the following day, Saturday, but they did not come. On Sunday it rained hard again, and I called them again. They went to the house and tried to fix the problem and placed another tarp. Their crew went home, unable to fix the problem for the 2nd time. There were still leaks in my attic. I personally placed 6 buckets in my attic and my master bedroom.
They came back a 3rd time, placed a tarp again, but the leaking continues and moisture keeps building up. I told them to have a roofer fix the problem. I reported the problem to the company, and I was passed around from one customer service rep to the next. They kept telling me they would take care of the leaks at my house. It has been 7 days now. The leaks have not been fixed and SolarCity has not dried the moisture in my attic and rooms.
SolarCity's warranty and repair service is very poor. They have good salesmen but very poor service. SolarCitys repairmen are not qualified to perform any roof repairs. I also received a letter from their insurance company that SolarCity cannot send a contractor to do the repairs. The fastest way to repair is for me to find a contractor myself. I have proof of all of this.
SolarCity has passed me around to different people. They never gave me a dedicated representative to look over the project, or any specific contact person to make decisions on the scheduling of repairs. I have e-mailed the salesperson, the warehouse manager, their installation crew, customer service and other departments to no avail. If you know of an attorney to help me please let me know.
From the first time I called to ask questions, SolarCity has been great! Everyone I've worked with has done everything to answer my questions. The installers reviewed every step of the process and verified my needs to make sure everything was as I wanted. My personal Energy Consultant has checked in with me several times to make sure everything was okay.
I have been live for 1 month now and I just love looking at the amount of Solar I am producing. But even more than that I love looking at my electric meter in the morning and then at the end of the day and seeing that I have used no electric from my landline company, but that I am giving GREEN sun powered solar energy back to them. Thank you SolarCity for the great experience.
We appreciate you sharing your experience with us. We are disappointed to hear you feel this way. Please keep in mind, estimated savings are calculated annually not monthly. That is because solar production changes from season to season and will affect your ability to offset your energy consumption from your utility. As you stated, your panels have only been on since December of 2016 and therefore you haven't had enough time to determine whether or not you are saving. It is also worthy to note that the sun changes with seasons, so your system will produce more in the spring/summer than it will in the autumn/winter.
Upon reviewing your account, we see that a customer relations manager recently addressed your concerns and you mentioned you'd be willing to wait a year. If you have any further questions, please 888-765-2489 option 2.
Thank you for your feedback.
Original review: Jan. 25, 2017
When I was thinking of getting the Solar Panels my consultant for Solar City kept telling me this is a fixed price for 20 Years. No more % increases like Delmarva Power my current Electric Co has. First I started out my bill would be $116.00 a month, then $120.00 a month. It ended up being $151.00 I said ok that beats my bills I have now. So I went ahead and got the panels, went with Solar city. Went live on 12/14/2016. Got my 1st bill for SC $300.58 which is for Jan & Feb. I got my DPL bill it was for $270.00. $164.00 is my gas and the rest is my Electric overage $106.00 I am paying SC 150.29 a month, my electric co $106.00. No one said anything about any overages just oh this is so exciting just think more % increase in electric for 20 Years. I am a widow who doesn't make a lot of money thought I was going to be saving and I am paying more.
If you are considering Solar City look at your 12 Months of previous bills see how much your Gas Bills are and combine them with your Solar City bill and any overage charges you get from your electric company. Sure they are so nice and there at your beck and call when you are considering them. I am very disappointed in what happened to me and very frightened for the next 20 years. Do your homework before you go with Solar City. Because what looks too good to be true usually is! I will be looking into this problem thru my government officials because I have seen the same complaint from other consumers. Just letting you know. Just beware.
I have the power purchase agreement that charges me 11 cents per kilowatt hour. My system was quoted as providing about 80% of my electricity needs. My electric company charges 9.8 cents per kilowatt hour, so I am now paying more for electricity than ever before. I take full blame for being swindled by my salesperson who all but guaranteed me that I would save some money. I would have be happy saving $10-$20 a month. I am writing this so other potential customers know that solar is not always cheaper and that some sales people will say anything to gain a customer. I overheard a sales pitch at a local Home Depot this week which encouraged me to write this review. SOLAR CITY - No need for a canned response. I have talked to numerous people already about my experience, unless you will take the panels off my roof.
Was very high on going solar... SolarCity listed as a Good Company and one of the largest. First Rep visit fine... Lots of on-line paperwork. Recommended numbers of panel's small. Installation guys EXCELLENT... Fast, NEAT, informative and friendly. After install? Things have gone South. I notice that there is little to no difference on my electric bills. I notice that NOBODY ANYWHERE I go has my small number of panels! NOT ONE HOUSE! My electric bill shows NO adjustment for an inflow of electric for ME? Is the electric generated by the panels going TO the electric company for free while I'm paying Solar rent?
I contact Solar. First guy says "you need a YEAR before we can take a look at the issue." After me staying on his case and getting nowhere I ask for his boss. She's nice, advises that YES they can put a second system with more panels... But begins dancing around. I call the electric company. They tell me 'No problem... Just have Solar reapply.' When I relay that message she starts to dance about getting someone to start the process... I haven't heard from her in a month. To say the least I'm VERY disappointed in SolarCity. In a week or so I will have to file a FORMAL complaint and see what else I can do. I'm willing to pay the addition rent to get the benefit of the system while right now seems to be helping SolarCity and my electric company but NOT ME.
A perk of installing with Solar City, according to my sales representative, was a "free Nest thermostat". Not all that valuable considering the entire deal ($250), but a nice perk. When the system was installed, no Nest thermostat. I contacted Solar City and was advised by "Jonathan **, my Solar Concierge that "I found that the nest thermostat did not qualify for your project due to the wiring of your heating and cooling system is not compatible." Fair enough. I removed my existing thermostat and found five colored wires that looked just like the typical installation on the Nest web page (see image). When I asked Jonathan who made the original decision on this, his response was "no specific person" and he suggested I contact Nest... So I did.
I sent them a picture of my wires and they sent me back an email stating "After reviewing the photo of your current thermostat wiring we were able to determine that you are compatible for the Nest thermostat." Done deal, right? Not so fast. After some effort I got to Jake ** of Solar City (Jonathan's boss?) and sent him the picture (plain as day) and email from Nest. He advised me he would "work with my engineering team right away". After some time, Jake advised me that "after consulting with the engineers at Solar City it was determined that Solar City couldn't install the Nest thermostat even though it was compatible with our HVAC system because their electricians weren't HVAC certified." So I was LIED to by Jonathan and Solar City's promise of a Nest thermostat appeared to be a SCAM all along.
Due to my ongoing protests of this clear violation of their promise, Solar City finally promised to send me a check for the value of the thermostat ($250). After several MORE weeks, and after I threatened not to turn my system on and ask for them to remove the solar panels, I got the check. I purchased the Nest myself (at Home Depot), installed it easily that afternoon (and I'm not even HVAC certified!), and it's been working great ever since (nice to be able to control my thermostat from my mobile). Easy, easy, easy. It appears that Solar City is an "alternative facts" company. In the face of clear evidence, their "engineers" simply insisted they couldn't do the simplest task and refused to do what they had promised. Liar, liar, pants on fire. Sad.
The panels on our roof I believe are too heavy and the person who surveyed my house did not know what he was doing. We have had numerous nail pops throughout the house since the installment of the panels. They sent 2 young men who had no experience in fixing them and they just spackled over the pops and left. I have spots everywhere on my ceilings and now have more pops coming through the ceiling and walls of my entire house. They were supposed to paint the ceiling when finished, kind of glad they didn't. Even I know that you repair them by replacing the nails with screws and then spackle.
When we try to call customer service no calls back, when we did get a response it was by email and they asked for pictures. We forwarded the pictures and now we are told they never received them. We were told when signing the contract that any damage to the house should be repaired at the expense of SOLAR CITY, now we are being told that it was fixed the first time as a courtesy to us. I will not stop complaining until they fix my ceilings that includes painting them or come and take their panels off and put a new roof on, before they were installed we put out 11,000 to have a new roof put on. They suck!
Buyer beware. The installation and initial agreements went very smoothly. The customer service of everyone involved in these aspects was outstanding. However, after installation I contacted customer service because there was some error in their website that made it to where I could not pay them. I was told that they could not take payment over the phone and that they would place a ticket in and get back to me later. Little did I know, this song and dance would continue for 11 months. I would call them because I couldn't pay them, they would say they would look into and call me back, and then I would not hear from them again until I called them back the following month.
Now, after 11 months of this dance, I can finally make a payment. Except, now I have a bill for $1500.00. When I contact the billing department to see if they can waive some of this, start my counter back to zero, or come to any kind of agreement with this totally unavoidable lump sum that is thrown my way (right after the holidays, I might add) I get nothing. They say I have to pay it in full. SolarCity's inability to get their billings in order has caused stress on my home and has left a poor taste in my mouth and wallet. I had such high hopes for SolarCity too.
Solarcity business is a rip off business and in the name of saving Solarcity rip off customers. I was promised 5000KW per year promised and delivered 3500KW but received full payment from customer. I asked many time to solve the issue. The reply from consumer manager was 1. Solarcity does not guarantee to deliver promised energy, 2. Solarcity doesn't guarantee to save money on saving over electricity bill but Solarcity has full rights to continue to abuse the customer over force panels in the roof. I am taking them to court to remove panels from roof. If anyone want to witness judge by a written letter or phone please let me know. My email is **. Thanks for your comments.
Poor Value and Billing. I just got my December bill from Xcel Energy and the charges for electrical use are higher than December 2015. As if SolarCity is not even involved, yet I get bills from them as well. Where is the value? SolarCity billing is irregular and when bills arrive, they are for multiple months. I can't budget this way on a fixed income. SolarCity has no local business office to whom I can turn to resolve issues.
When I bought my house October of last year, it had solar panels from SolarCity. I was given the choice to keep them or have them removed. So I thought... Solar should be good and help and I can also help the environment. What I got was non-disclosure, an inadequate system and bills from Pasadena PWP that were higher than my apartment which was incidentally larger than the house I bought. It took solar city almost a year to figure out that they were charging me for the former owner's new residence (they did eventually pay me back), poor service and the latest interaction being that "your panels are only set up for a 50% offset and you can't change anything until next year." I think that the California dept of consumer affairs and the AGs office should look into their less than honorable business practices... BUYER BEWARE!!!
Dining roof leaked after installation = water all over. Reinstaller said you would send person to repair dining room. This on 10/6/16. No connect with your company since that time. Called 1 Alex ** your representative. NO calls at all from any rep in your company until I contacted 8887652489. Service said at this time 12-2-16 that our file has been closed. No reason given.
Thank you for taking the time to share your experience and for bringing your concerns to our attention. We apologize that you feel like you aren't saving from going solar, and we'd like to help. Upon looking into your account, we see that a customer relations manager reached out to you on 12/5 and requested your utility bills from one year before and after going solar in order to conduct a thorough savings analysis for you. Please get back to her with this information when you get a chance.
If you need anything in the meantime, please call us at 888-765-2489 option 2. We look forward to hearing from you and appreciate the opportunity to address your concerns.
Original review: Nov. 30, 2016
My electric bill before solar power install was $35 to $75 a month. After solar power I have to pay over $100 a month. SolarCity took over 3 months to send first bill. As soon as I saw it I called them to take it down. I was told I was stuck with it. I did tell my rep that my monthly bill was too small for solar power and I was told my bill would be the same with Solar. After only being able to pay no more than $100 a month now I owe more than at the beginning. At this rate I will never pay it off. They refuse to take it down. I need advise. I feel like I signed a contract with the devil himself. Please advise me what to do. I'm going to go to every home where I see solar panels and see if I can gather 100 people in my situation and find a person to help 100 instead of me alone. I know it will take me time but I have no other way to get rid of SolarCity. Anyone's advice will be appreciated.
It has been an absolute pleasure, working with a very professional SolarCity team. Sales Manager, Patrick **, walked us through every step of the installation process. Every team member was equipped to answer any question we had. The installation crew was prompt, efficient, and worked in a timely manner. The inspectors from the county and power company had nothing but good things to say about SolarCity and the workmanship. My husband had the honors of flipping the switch and levers that turned on the solar system, and everything worked as it should. Now we are enjoying everything solar has to offer. With much appreciation to all of you...
I have gone through 2 great reps and 3 years of SolarCity NOT going through with what they have promised me many times over. One hand doesn't know what the other is doing and they have wasted 3 years of my life in getting solar panels. It is Attorney time as I see that my rep no longer works there. Now they can pay me in order to get my solar panels. See you in court.
Overall we were quite satisfied with the response time in getting the paperwork done and installing the system. The only holdup was on the financial end and it seemed to take quite a while to get that part done so we good go online. We like your concierge service. They are very professional and pleasant to work with.
I have appreciated the service that I get from SolarCity. They have done exactly what they said they would do. I am saving money, and helping the environment. This is a great product. I wish the electric company didn't make it so hard to complete the process.
Thank you for taking the time to share your concerns and leave this review. We apologize if you feel that you aren't seeing the savings you expected yet. Please keep in mind, solar savings are based on a year's worth of production, and your system has only been on since the end of July. We encourage you to give the system time to see that you will save on energy bills.
In the meantime, we've asked that a member of our customer care team reach out to you to discuss your concerns further.
Original review: Nov. 10, 2016
I have received the past couple months of my electrical bills since installation of the Solar panels. I must say it's still not where they told me it would be. I have contacted them and my electric company. Hopefully someone from SolarCity will help fix this issue.
I have looked into solar panels for my home but was daunted by the initial investment. My SolarCity rep Ray ** helped me find a plan that was right for me. He guided me through the entire process, ensuring that the work on my part was easy and that I understood each step of the process. The installers were fast, efficient and very good about not causing any damage to my house or landscaping. It was plain to see that they were as passionate about their job as my rep was about his. I highly recommend my rep, and thank SolarCity giving me free solar panels and a locked in rate per kilowatt for the next 20 years. Yeah! No more uncontrollable price increases like PG&E.
When the rep came to my house for the first meeting, the first question she asked was, "Why do you want solar panels?" I said that I wanted green energy. Her response was, "That's the right answer." She took me through the process step by step. When I had questions she was able to readily answer them. Based on my electric bill she was able to show me what percentage of my electricity would be solar. Based on a shy view picture of my house I was able to see what the panels would look like on the roof. She laid out the process step by step regarding the initial inspection, permits, installation and certification by NYSEG. Whenever I had questions I was able to call SolarCity and the staff was very knowledgeable and courteous. I have referred 4 friends to SolarCity. I had tried to set up solar panels with another company last year but the quality of the service was lacking. Not so with SolarCity.
Everyone from the sales representative to the crew to customer service was wonderful. If we had questions they would attend to us immediately and take care of us with such care and attention yet they were always professional. We've been recommending to everyone!
Well pleased with installation and knowledge of how the system operates. Polite with my interruptions of questions. Like that the meter runs BACKWARDS before meter changed to a recording meter that shows what I'm producing & the minimum I'm still using.
SolarCity had Switched on my Solar system and after about 3 weeks it was time to check my PG&E account for online payment as we also own a small business with PG&E power. After paying our Business Account bill I proceeded to also pay our Home PG&E Account and it was really a PLEASANT Surprise when our Bill was a Whopping NEGATIVE $76.51 and on top of that it also included our GAS BILL---WOW PG&E owing US---GREAT.
SolarCity Company Profile