Solar Electric Arizona – Are There Enough Solar Electric Contractors

Solar Electric Arizona – What a great billboard that would be, and right next to it imagine another billboard saying: Solar Electric Contractors Wanted.
The demand for solar electric is on the rise with the increasing costs of conventional fossil fuel electricity, the fear of global warming really becoming an issue in the not so distant future, and technology advances driving home solar system prices down closer to where these systems are becoming more affordable for many home owners.
With demand for commercial and residential solar being high, there comes the question "will supply keep up?" Are there enough solar panels to go around and are there enough solar electric contractors to install them?

Solar Electric In Arizona – A Prime Market
Arizona is a prime market for home solar electric systems and solar hot water heaters. The sun shines for over 300 days per year in Arizona which makes the state one strong solar market. Also, coupled with a lot of sunshine are a lot of single family homes with rooftops ready for solar panels. To help matters, the state has also set itself up for being a great residential solar electric market. In 2007 the state legislature passed a law that prevents homeowners associations from blocking a homeowner’s right to install solar panels on their roof.
With all this potential in Arizona and other parts of the Southwest, however, there are at least two issues holding up the real growth and development of the Arizona solar market.

Home Solar Electric Systems Are Still Expensive
Solar electric systems designed for home use are still quite expensive for many homeowners. Purely from a financial standpoint, it still takes around 20 years to get the return on the investment to get a solar electric system installed. Another stopping point at the moment is the huge slow down in the U.S. housing market. Again this is related to financial concerns. Americans are weighing the real cost and benefit to making a difference for the environment and saving their pocket book. For more information on costs see Home Solar Systems and What Do They Cost?

Solar Electric Contractors Are Not A Dime A Dozen
Although this is changing somewhat, there is no glutton of solar electric contractors. This problem could actually slow down a large scale national switch to residential solar energy. With not enough trained technicians to keep up with demand, families could be waiting for months if not years to get their home solar systems installed. In areas like Arizona and other parts of the Southwest where there are so many single family homes this could be an even larger problem.
With contractors and installers in limited supply the cost for installation could be held artificially high. Essentially the highest bidder gets their system installed first. Those with less disposable income have to continue to wait to convert their homes to solar. Ultimately, in either direction, consumer pocketbooks and wallets get pinched as electricity prices continue to go up. The environment will continue to suffer with continually elevating demand for conventional greenhouse producing electricity.

Lemonade In The Lemons – A Lot Of Green Jobs

Not having enough trained solar contractors and installers has a tremendous upside for the U.S. Labor markets. With so many installers, estimators, contractors and sales people needed there will be plenty of job opportunities. In many parts of the country there are training programs that continue to pop up and grow to this newly needed solar and green energy workforce. Will it be enough to keep up with demand? Only the future will really tell the truth.
For the individual who wants a new career, one that promises a lot of upward movement, green jobs offer a lot of possibility. Now is the perfect time to retrain yourself into a new solar career; the opportunity is wide open. It does take some time to get trained and gain the experience and you’ll likely have to start at the bottom and work your way up. You may take a pay cut for awhile, but once you’ve done a few installs you will probably be able to write your own ticket for increased pay and jobs.
Not only are there going to be jobs for installers and contractors, there will be a huge job potential for those who produce and distribute solar electric systems to the commmerical and residential markets. Technology continues to drive prices down and experts predict that within the next 5 years the cost for solar will equal that of fossil fuels. When this happens the flood gates will open. Luckily, there are several large manufacturing programs in development in the U.S. to supply solar PV systems to the U.S. markets which should allow supply of materials to keep up with demand for the systems. Let’s just hope we can get the trained workers that we need.

Arizona Should Be A Market Leader In Home Solar
A state like Arizona should be one of the industry leaders in Solar Electric with the huge potential residential solar systems waiting to be installed. As technology continues to drive down the costs of solar PV panels demand should continue to grow. Hopefully, contractor supply will not hinder demand too much.
More importantly, let’s hope that more and more local, state and federal programs will come online to encourage a massive shift to using this incredible renewable energy supply called solar energy. This really needs to be looked at with the urgency that was used to create the U.S. Interstate Highway system back in the 1950’s. Let’s go Governments.