Savenia Ratings Reduce Solar Sales Barriers in Pilot Study!

Today we announced exciting new results from a 2nd pilot study assessing the impact of Savenia Solar Ratings on prospective solar customers.

PrintThe pilot study demonstrated that independent solar ratings from Savenia, when presented alongside a standard solar agreement to prospective buyers, reduced some of the most common concerns buyers face around system costs and fees when making the decision to go solar. Full release is here.

This builds on the results from Savenia’s first pilot study, which demonstrated Savenia Solar Ratngs increased interest in purchasing a new solar system and increased trust in solar proposals.

Savenia Solar Ratings demonstrate the power of certification effects, the well-known impacts of 3rd party marks that signal trust, quality and often support higher pricing on associated products and services.

Savenia is now signing up partners nationwide to bring the power of Savenia Solar Ratings into the proposal process. Interested partners can request more information at http://saveniahome.com/channel-partner/.

Savenia Ratings Increase Solar Conversion in Pilot Study!

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 3.38.53 PMToday we are happy to announce some exciting new results from a pilot study assessing the impact of Savenia Solar Ratings on prospective solar customers.

The study, implemented in collaboration with the community organization Bethesda Green, demonstrated Savenia Solar Ratings increased interest in purchasing a new solar system, increased trust in solar proposals and increased willingness to recommend solar to friends and family. Find the full release here.

Potential solar customers were much more likely to go solar when a Savenia Solar Rating accompanied the solar proposal. When given the opportunity to name top concerns, respondents with the Savenia rating were far less likely to mention ‘solar home future sale’ and ‘solar panel obsolescence’ than the group that did not receive one. These two issues were some of the most common negatives volunteered by respondents when presented with the non-Savenia solar proposal.

Savenia is now signing up partners nationwide to bring the power of Savenia Solar Ratings into the proposal process. Interested partners can request more information at http://saveniahome.com/channel-partner/.

Natural Gas Prices Rise After 5 Year Decline – Savenia

Screen Shot 2015-04-15 at 2.53.27 PMUS residential natural gas prices rose in 2014 for the first time since 2008, increasing 6% over prior year to the surprise of many homeowners expecting the low pricing to continue with the boom in domestic production.

The reality is an industry struggling to keep up with increasing demand from colder weather and conversion from large coal power plants to natural gas supply. And this is unlikely to be the end of higher prices. Further investment to expand domestic infrastructure and the future potential to export LPG overseas at much higher prices will be the drivers here. Nevertheless, natural gas is still cheaper than electricity when compared according to heat content (BTU’s).

Hawaii pays almost $5 per therm, almost 5x more than the US average price of $1.06, while North Dakota pays 83 cents per them, some 30% less than the average.

In 2014 most states paid more for natural gas, with large increases of 20-30%+ in the 8 states of NE (21%), MI (22%), CO (23%), AZ & NH (24%), NC & WI (29%) and IL (34%).

With GasSavvy-DBTM, Savenia rates the costs and environmental impacts of products that use or are impacted by natural gas for each zip code, so buyers can compare and make more informed purchase decisions.

Savenia Introduces a Powerful Weapon To Fight The California Water Crisis

This letter was sent to Governor Jerry Brown of California on April 3rd 2015.
Dear Governor Brown,

Screen Shot 2015-04-03 at 1.17.53 PMWith the escalating long-term water crisis in California – we have a simple solution that can make a big impact. Savenia Hydro Rating Labels on retail shelves and online can show Californians for the first time how much water washing machines and dishwashers use BEFORE they buy. The Savenia rating system has been available for years and used by millions of consumers across several mid-atlantic states, and can easily move to California. The system can also be applied to other appliance categories like air conditioners that have California specific usage and energy characteristics.

The impact. The average Californian uses 178 gallons of water per day, and a load of wash with an inefficient washing machine can use 40 gallons (22%). This can be cut by 63% to 15 gallons with water efficient units. With an average CA family of 3 washing several loads per day, these savings add up quite quickly. Saving water also saves money. Contrary to popular belief, water costs (not energy costs) drive up to 60% of total operating costs of a California washing machine.
Current Energy Guide and Energy Star labels omit water use. Energy Star certified products have a range of water usage which shoppers cannot easily see.
Savenia makes water usage transparent at the point of sale, resulting in better decisions for shoppers and the environment. At a time like this, Californians can ill afford to continue shopping in the dark.
Please let us know how we can be of assistance to the State of California.

Savenia Rates White House Solar System

imagesToday we proudly rated the solar system recently installed on The White House rooftop. After meeting with the US Department of Energy about our innovative new Savenia Solar Ratings, we are able to award the White House our coveted Savenia Solar Gold Rating.

The White House installed a 6.3kW solar system, and we estimate the system value at almost $27,000. In addition, we estimate the system will earn up to another $43,000 over the next 15 years through energy production plus renewable energy certificates minus expenses.

This system gets a Savenia Gold Rating because of the high return on investment for someone looking to move into this house….whoever that will be in 2017.

We are providing a copy of the Savenia Rating here for the White House to display to the public.

Savenia helps homeowners, Realtors, builders and renovators unlock the value of home efficiency upgrades. www.saveniahome.com

Savenia Rates one of Largest Residential Solar Installations in Maryland

 

BC8380315 - Solar PanelsSavenia was delighted to recently rate the solar installation at a beautiful home for sale at 1212 Bernoudy Road in White Hall, Maryland.

In what we understand to be one of the largest residential solar installations in the state of Maryland – the home has 88 panels producing some 22kW of electricity. Our Savenia Solar Rating shows that the system itself is worth upwards of $126,000, and could earn up to $155,000 over the next 15 years for the new buyer. This system earned a Savenia Gold rating due to its high return for the new home buyer.

“This is a uniquely beautiful home on 15+ peaceful acres with countryside views, structurally insulated panels and geothermal throughout in addition to one of the largest residential solar systems in Maryland” said Heidi Krauss from Krauss Real Property Brokerage. “Savenia makes it easy to explain the benefits of solar so prospective buyers can see the full value of this truly magnificent home”.

Savenia helps homeowners, Realtors, builders and renovators unlock the value of efficiency upgrades.

How Much Is Your Solar System Worth To Home Buyers?

It could be a lot.  Several large studies now show that solar can increase home values by as much as $15-25K depending on system size and age. But most solar system owners undersell the benefits when they market their home. The typical listing for a home with solar panels says somewhere in the details…..wait for it…..solar.  

Screen Shot 2014-05-21 at 3.01.33 PMSellers should say more. Buyers are interested in saving money on their energy bills, and this can be a differentiator to get a home sold faster. Some systems even earn money by selling energy back to the utility, a big selling point. Even in cases where the solar system is leased and cash flow is about break-even, buyers are interested in the environmental benefits of a home with clean energy. And for many leased systems, convincing the new buyer to keep the lease is crucial – newer leases now require home sellers to “buy out” the remaining lease term if the new owners don’t agree to the lease’s conditions.

Savenia helps homeowners, realtors, builders and renovators unlock the value of efficiency upgrades – and with our large databases, we’re in a great position to help solar homeowners cash in on their investments.
If you have solar on your home and wondered how best to market this to buyers – please get in touch at info@savenialabs.com.  Or sign up to learn more here.
Thanks everyone for your continued support!

 

Electricity Prices Rise Again in 2013 – 10th Straight Year

Residential electricity prices rose again in 2013 for the 10th straight year. The average US household now pays around 12 cents per kilowatt hour for electricity, 2% ahead of last year but 44% above the cost back in 2002 before the current decade of price increases began.  Savenia Labs ElectroSavvy-DB database tracks energy cost and environmental impact data by zip code.

ElectroSavvy-DB LogoSome 80% of states saw prices increase, with Louisiana rates jumping almost 11%, while RI, NY, CA and ID saw increases in the 6-7% range.  The highest rates in the country continue to be in Hawaii at 3x the national average, followed by NY, AK, CT, VT and CA which all pay between 45-55% more than average. Illinois was the only state to see a double digit drop in prices of 11% vs last year.

While power plants are slowly moving to replace coal with natural gas – the impact is not yet being felt by residential customers. Forecasting is difficult as electricity demand continues to grow while natural gas supply tries to keep up with higher demand from the colder winter in the east and other sectors. It looks increasingly likely that 2014 prices will rise again.

Buyers will make very different purchase decisions based on local electric, gas and water pricing which can swing operating costs quite dramatically based on zip code. Savenia found that the least expensive washing machine to operate in some cities costs hundreds more to operate than other models in different locations, all due to local utility pricing. Savenia captures these differences to help buyers make better decisions. In RetailEnterprise and now for Home buyers and sellers.

 

 

Savenia Turns 5 – Rates 150,000 Products

We’ve come a long way since launching energy ratings on a handful of small appliances at Strosniders Ace Hardware Store in Bethesda and Silver Spring at the end of 2011.

Screen Shot 2014-03-25 at 10.58.46 AMSince then we’ve built a massive database of energy ratings on 150,000 products; appliances, lightbulbs, electronics and more covering over 30 categories. And we’re presenting the data in ways never seen before – pinpointed to every zip code with localized utility cost and environmental impact databases for electricity, natural gas, water, propane and heating oil.

In the process we’ve been able to touch millions of purchasing decision-makers – large and small with a new way to think about buying products that save utility costs and go easy on the environment.

On our 5th birthday – we want to say a big thank you to all of our partners and supporters in Retail, EnterpriseHome and elsewhere for supporting our growth over this period!

Natural Gas Prices Decline in 2013 – 5th Year Running

Natural gas prices to US residential customers declined by 4% in 2013, marking the 5th straight year on year decline. Prices last peaked in 2008 and have since dropped 26%.

GasSavvy-DB LogoSavenia Labs recent update of our GasSavvy-DB database includes natural gas prices and impacts by zip code.  The highest natural gas prices in the country were in Hawaii – where residents paid almost $5 per therm, some 5x more than the median US price. Colorado has the lowest prices, around 75 cents per therm at a savings of 25% from the US median. Almost every state saw a decline in residential natural gas prices in 2013.

At the same time, electricity prices continue to rise (even though many power plants run on natural gas) and this is changing the dynamics of purchasing decisions for gas vs. electric appliances like furnaces and heat pumps – where traditionally the more efficient electric heat pump had the edge.

Despite this long-term trend, market conditions and weather can still have significant impacts on short-term pricing. Prices hit a 5-year high on Feb. 24 2014 as temperatures plunged due to the infamous polar vortex, with unanticipated high consumption pushing natural gas inventories to their lowest levels in the last 10 years. Since then, as inventories have adjusted, prices have subsided.

Going forward, pricing dynamics are harder to predict as more domestic gas supply (which normally means lower prices) is pitted against higher priced export customers. There are also outstanding questions on the environmental impacts of natural gas – both to air pollution and water supplies, and we look forward to larger scale studies to help quantify the differences vs. coal and other sources.

Buyers will make very different purchase decisions based on local gas, electric and water pricing which can swing operating costs quite dramatically based on zip code. Savenia captures these differences to help buyers make better decisions. In Retail, Enterprise and now for Home buyers and sellers.