For homeowners, thinking about making the switch to solar power can be like heading down the rabbit hole. The number of questions that come up when imagining if solar power is feasible for their building and their location are numerous: How big of a system do they need, how much can they afford, and how much power can they produce? And what kind of financial incentives exist to make it easier?
A startup in New Orleans is trying to help make the decision that much easier, by offering people the resources to design their own system for free, as well as find out what the costs are, what the potential power generation is, and how long it will take to see a return on the investment costs.SOLarchitect Studio hopes to launch their consumer tool later this year:
"Never before have you had the power to design a rooftop solar panel system for your own home. SOLarchitect Studio provides a free, web-based tool that allows you to drag and drop solar panels onto a satellite image of your home with incredible accuracy and magnificent precision. You’ll find out how much your solar panels will cost, how much they’ll produce, how much you’ll save, and when you’ll see a return on your investment."
The company now has $50,000 in seed money thanks to a crowdfunding event during New Orleans Entrepreneurship Week, according to Good. "Assessing your home’s solar potential now becomes as easy as ordering a pizza online," said co-founder Alex Landau.
Coming this summer: "Just drag, drop, and save the planet. It’s that easy."