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Community Solar Help Center
  • Is there a solar farm available in my area? How do I join?

    We serve customers who are members of community solar farms in four states: Minnesota, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, and Washington, D.C. If you live in one of these areas, you can check to see if there is an open community solar farm near you. All it takes is 10 minutes to enroll online for community solar.  

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  • I’m an existing Clean Electricity customer, what can I expect when I also sign up for community solar?

    Here are answers to some common questions for our current customers looking to add community solar.

     

    What is community solar?

    Community solar is an exciting new way for you to continue support 100% clean energy AND save between 5 and 10% on your electric bills. 

     

    How does community solar work?

    • You subscribe to a CleanChoice Energy community solar farm.
    • Your solar farm generates electricity. Electricity from your solar farm goes directly into your regional utility grid. You pay a monthly community solar subscription to CleanChoice based on how much electricity is produced by your share of the solar farm.
    • You receive credits on your electric bill. The electricity produced from your share of the community solar farm will appear as "bill credits" on your electric bill, reducing your total amount owed.
    • You save money. Through your subscription, you’ll save between 5 and 10% off your electric bills in the first year.

     

    What are the benefits of participating in community solar?

    • You save between 5 and 10% on electricity costs. The bill credits you earn are deducted from your monthly electric bill. 
    • You increase your support for local, clean energy - doing your part to help ensure a better environment.

     

    What if I am already a CleanChoice Energy customer?

    That’s great! When you upgrade and add community solar, you continue to support renewable energy, but you also can save between 5 and 10% on your electric bills. 

    Additionally, once your community solar enrollment is complete, we’ll lower the clean electricity supply rate you had been paying by moving you to our Friends & Family plan.  This rate plan is only available to customers like you who use both our 100% clean electricity supply product and subscribe to one of our local community solar farms.   

     

    How do I add community solar?

    You should be able to complete your community solar enrollment in 10 minutes or less: 

    1. Enroll at CleanChoiceEnergy.com/solarupgrade.
    2. Have your utility account number ready - you’ll also have the option to add a checking account or credit card to enroll in automatic payments. Once you submit your enrollment, we’ll work with your utility to process your enrollment and will notify you when your enrollment is complete, or let you know if we need any more information. 

     

    How does my bill change?

    Community solar customers receive two bills - your existing electric bill from your utility where your CleanChoice clean electric supply charges will continue to appear and your solar bill credits will start to show up. Your community solar bill credits will appear in the billing details section of your electric bill and will help to lower your monthly total. The second bill you will start to receive will be  from CleanChoice Energy, which covers your monthly community solar subscription, and is based on the amount of solar energy your share of the farm produced. 

     

    How will I see savings?

    Through community solar, you will save between 5 and 10% off your electric bill in the first year. The bill credits that you earn are applied to your monthly electric bill to reduce the total amount you owe. Even though you will have to pay two bills, the difference between what you pay for your community solar subscription and the value of the bill credits on your electric bill should result in savings - and a better, cleaner world. 

     

    How is my monthly community solar bill calculated?

    Your monthly community solar payment is determined by the size of your share of the farm and the amount of solar energy produced. If your solar farm subscription produces more credits than you can use in a single billing cycle, these credits will rollover and be applied to future electric bills. 

     

    What else do I need to know?

    • You could save between 5 and 10%  on your electric bill.
    • There are no changes to your relationship with your utility.
    • There are no upfront costs or payments.
    • There is no equipment, installation, or maintenance.
    • If you move within your utility’s service area, please call us! We can help you transfer your community solar subscription to your new address. 
    • There is an early termination fee if you cancel your community solar subscription out of convenience, unless you are able to transfer your contract to another qualified customer. See your subscriber agreement for additional details. 
    • There are a limited number of spots available per farm - so don’t miss out!

     

    Will I still receive service from my utility?

    Yes, your utility will still maintain the wires, prepare your monthly electric bill, and provide reliable service. 

     

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  • How close do I need to live to the Community Solar farm?

    To be eligible for membership in a community solar farm, you must live within the same service area as the location of the farm. Other conditions might also apply based on the specific rules in your state. Want to see if you’re eligible for subscription to one of our farms? Please call us at 1-800-581-0702 or click here.

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  • Do I need to install anything at my house or perform any maintenance?

    No. Nothing will be installed at your house, and the project owner maintains the system. There is no home improvement project required to join a community solar farm, nothing gets installed on your roof, and it doesn’t matter whether you own or rent.

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  • How long do I need to live in my current residence to be eligible to enroll in community solar?

    It’s recommended that you are in your current residence for at least six months. That way we can better analyze your electrical usage to give you an appropriate share of the assigned community solar farm. And we’ll also work with your utility company to review your annual electrical usage to determine your proper share.

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  • Do you have to be a homeowner to participate in community solar?

    No! One of the great benefits of community solar is that renters can participate. And if you move within your utility service area, you can transfer your subscription to your new address.

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  • What do I need to sign up for community solar?

    With our online platform, enrollment is easy. Here’s all you need to do:

    • Find a local farm near you
    • Enter your utility account number, which can be found on your utility bill.
    • Add a checking account or credit card if you’d like to enroll in automatic payments.
    • Consent to a soft credit check

    The entire process should take 10 minutes or less. After that, we’ll work directly with your utility to process your enrollment, then notify you when it's complete or if we need any more information.

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  • Is an email address required to sign up for community solar?

    We prefer that you provide an email address when you sign up for community solar so that we can notify you when your enrollment is complete, and your solar farm is ready to be turned on. Plus, it lets us send you monthly customer newsletters, referral offers, and much more.

    Better yet, it also makes you eligible to pay your bill online and sign up for automatic payments and paperless billing, which helps us minimize our paper consumption.

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  • Will a soft credit check impact my credit score?

    No, not at all, since it isn’t tied to a new credit . For more information about the difference between soft and hard credit checks, click here.

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  • When will my enrollment be complete?

    It can take six to eight weeks to be finalized and we’ll contact you if we need more information. Once your enrollment is confirmed, we’ll send you an email confirmation along with a small welcome kit.

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  • How will I know if my solar farm has turned on?

    We’ll send you an email to let you know your farm is up and running, and do our best to include a timeline for when you can expect to see solar bill credits on your utility bill.

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  • How does CleanChoice Energy work with my utility company?

    We work with them to process your enrollment, determine your share of the solar farm, and set you up to receive solar credits on your bill.

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  • How does CleanChoice Energy determine my share of a solar farm?

    Your share of the solar farm (also called an “allocation”) is based on your annual historical usage. The annual production of each of our community solar farms is different, but the number of subscribers for each farm is based on the total estimated solar energy production. 

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  • How long does it take before I start receiving credits?

    If you join a farm that’s already producing solar power, you can expect to see credits on your utility bill in one or two billing cycles.

    If you join a farm still under construction, you’ll start receiving credits once the farm is generating solar power. Don’t worry, we’ll provide you with construction updates and send an email when your farm has turned on. You won’t be billed until it begins generating solar energy.

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