solar panels installed on the roof

New California Regulations Would Require Solar Panels on All New Home Construction

Rod Johnson Solar

A new law being debated in the state legislature would require all new home construction in the state of California to be fitted with solar panels producing renewable energy. These laws and regulations could affect homeowners and new property construction of homes, apartments, and all types of residential buildings.

Senate Bill 71 (SB71) was first tested in the San Francisco area and is being proposed by state senator Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco. That law that law required that 15% of all new buildings be fitted with “solar ready” equipment. But the new statewide law could mandate solar panels to be built on all new residences and homes of all types in the entire state.

Other California cities already compel solar panels to be installed and operational on all new homes. Lancaster in Los Angeles county requires at least 2 wattage hours per square foot of roof space to be in place. Property owners of businesses that cannot satisfy the requirement must pay a fee. The statewide laws for new properties are likely to be similar.

What does this mean for developers?

Potentially any new building on any property in California might require the ability to install operational solar panels, in lieu of incurring a fee. Finding a low cost but high quality solution to solar panel installation will be vital for continued construction of home developments and all types of building.

The new regulations would likely require a certain amount of watts produced, necessitating the need for high-quality solar panels that are efficient with the latest technology. Having an inadequate old system or no power production from renewable energy at all could incur a fine.

Business owners should look forward to the lower cost of energy built into their property and factor that into their building costs. Solar panels produce a positive return on investment over time and will save property owners money.

What does this mean for homeowners?

A likely scenario if the legislation passes is that new homes and housing developments will be required to carry solar panel installations. And it’s just as likely that it will soon be required for all homes to have solar panels installed or face green energy fees and fines.

Any private home builder or home owner might soon need to produce renewable sunlight energy on their property in order to surpass the new government home standards.

And private homeowners can look forward to the economic benefits of producing part of their energy and power needs just like businesses. The costs savings from solar panels should be considered an investment that pays off in the long run. California homes will continue to rise in value, where they’re already over 2.5 times the national average at $440,000.

What does this mean for the environment?

California produces the most solar of any state in the US, over 15,000 megawatts annually — currently enough to power nearly 4 million homes. And that number is set to rise dramatically. Renewable energies will continue to save homeowners money and satisfy government requirements to avoid paying fines, while benefiting the environment in huge ways by cutting down on fossil fuel consumption.