photo of home off the grid - EarthShip.comThe number of homeowners installing solar panels leased from third parties is skyrocketing in the US, particularly in states that initiate incentive programs, like California’s “One Million Solar Roofs.”

This week comes news that third-party-owned solar transactions have pumped more than $938 million into California’s economy in 2012, a record-high annual amount equal to that of all the previous five years combined.

“We are seeing the most growth in low and median-income zip codes as companies like Sunrun continue to remove the barriers to (solar panel) access,” said the managing director of a digest for solar businesses, PV Solar Report.

“Solar service is bringing solar to more American families not only because it eliminates the upfront cost, but also because it removes the hassles of ownership,” Sunrun co-CEO Lynn Jurich said in a press release.

In January, California’s program to boost the number of solar rooftops hit a new milestone. Over 1,000 megawatts (one gigawatt) of solar projects were installed throughout the state thanks to the Million Roofs program. This is roughly the equivalent of two medium-sized coal-fired power plants or one nuclear plant — and doesn’t include solar installations by public utilities.

Other states with third-party solar leasing opportunities that can save homeowners money on utility bills include: Arizona, California, Colorado, and Massachusetts — and more recently, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Texas, Vermont, and Washington.

(READ the full story from Clean Technica)

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