Is solar worth it for businesses?

Fast read

Businesses worldwide are increasingly adopting solar power due to its multifaceted benefits. Solar helps businesses significantly reduce monthly energy bills by generating their own electricity, thereby decreasing dependence on the grid.

This investment not only leads to financial savings but also enhances a company's public image, showcasing its eco-friendly stance and commitment to combating climate change. Moreover, adding solar panels can increase property value, making properties more attractive to potential buyers.

Solar also offers a safeguard against the unpredictability of rising electricity costs, ensuring a consistent energy price in the long run. Given solar's current affordability and its decreasing costs, it's an opportune time for businesses to consider this renewable energy source, though factors like location and climate should be assessed before installation.

Is solar viable for a business?

One thing I’m sure all business owners can agree with is that they are never looking forward to the energy bill at the end of the month, especially with the rising energy costs predicted. Well, it’s no surprise that with this situation ongoing globally, large government bodies and corporations are starting to make the move to solar for business. Many businesses are starting to see the numerous benefits of solar power and making the move to a greener and cheaper future. So if you are considering going solar for your business, make sure you read the article below to aid in an educated decision on whether solar power makes sense for your business. 

To work out whether solar power makes sense for your business, you must first get an understanding of your energy bill. To do this, you can simply have a look at your past energy bills and averaging them, or ask your energy provider for an annual report. After this, you should explore what options are available for your specific roof. You can do this by sizing your roof to work out whether it will be worth your time and money to install a solar system. After these two steps are done, you should understand what your business goals are. If you are looking to grow your business then solar may be the option for you. 

Commercial Office Building with solar
By generating their energy, businesses become less reliant on external energy sources and fluctuations in energy prices

So what are the major benefits that you could encounter when getting solar for your business? 

Reduce ever-increasing energy bills

The first and most obvious benefit for your business is the significant reduction in energy costs. If your business currently has high energy costs then it makes complete sense to get a solar system. When you produce your solar energy, you no longer have to buy large amounts from the grid which means you don’t need to pay such high rates for your electricity. With this spare cash you are saving, you can reinvest more into your business, a goal most businesses aim for.

Furthermore, the initial investment in a solar system can often be recovered within a few years through savings on energy bills. The longevity of solar panels, often with warranties extending to 25 years, ensures a long-term investment that continues to provide cost savings well into the future.

Increase your positive public brand image

A very important factor to a business is its public image. If a business has a negative public image then it may damage their reputation as well as sales. This is where solar can help as it highlights how your business is considerate and eco-friendly. Furthermore, it allows you to promote your business as standing against climate change which is a very important variable for customers in this day and age. 

Sustainable business practices and compliance with Government initiatives

Various government bodies across Australia are enacting legislation and initiatives to encourage sustainable practices within the corporate sector. By transitioning to solar energy and solar batteries, businesses are not only reducing their carbon footprint but are also aligning themselves with regional and national sustainability goals. This compliance can translate to eligibility for grants, tax incentives, and overall favourable standing in regulatory assessments.

Increased property value 

With the current electricity prices and constant innovations in solar, many are expecting the value of having solar power to increase in years to come. This means that once you install a solar system you won’t only see their value in savings, but also their ability to increase property value. Since they can provide a business with lower operating costs, high ROI and low maintenance costs, they become a large asset for your business. 

Since there is also a continuous increase in electricity costs and solar’s popularity, it’s no surprise that business owners prefer to buy buildings with solar systems installed on them. 

large commercial solar system for business
If you seek to add solar to your business, it can increase the property value if done correctly

Furthermore, the improved energy efficiency rating of a building equipped with solar panels becomes a notable selling point, attracting savvy buyers and investors.

Protection against rising costs

As stated above, electricity prices are on the rise and since we are located in Australia we don’t really have a say in this matter, instead, we are locked into energy contracts where the price could increase at any moment. However, when you invest in a solar system, you break the bond between the rising prices and your business. Although your system might not cover all your electricity costs, you can rest assured knowing that a large portion of your energy consumption will be provided free from the sun. 

Resilience during power outages

In addition to the cost savings and environmental benefits, solar systems, particularly those paired with energy storage solutions, provide an added layer of resilience to businesses. If there is a power outage or grid failure, having a solar battery system ensures continuous power supply, minimising operational disruptions and potential revenue loss.

Employee benefits – electric vehicle charging

As the transition to electric vehicles accelerates, having an on-site solar-powered charging station becomes an invaluable perk for employees. Free or subsidised EV charging stations, powered by the business’s solar and battery system, can serve as a significant incentive for current and prospective employees while fostering a culture of environmental care. As EVs become more prevalent, offering charging facilities could also become an expectation, making early adoption a wise move.

EV charging with money jar infront of it
Offering free EV charging and an employee benefit in the future will become more and more popular for innovative businesses

Supporting the local economy and job creation

Investing in solar and battery installations supports the local economy by creating jobs in the renewable energy sector. By choosing local solar contractors and maintenance services, businesses contribute to regional economic growth and job creation, which, in turn, can have positive ripple effects within the community

Learning and innovation opportunities

Embarking on the solar and battery journey for your business can also spark innovation and learning within the organisation. Employees and management can engage in monitoring and optimising energy usage, exploring new technologies, and innovating in ways that can further reduce carbon emissions and operational costs.  This in turn can lead to a shift in the way employees think about energy.

In summary

The rationale for businesses to adopt solar and battery storage systems is compelling, encompassing financial gains, enhanced brand image, operational resilience, and a step towards a sustainable, electric mobility-friendly infrastructure. As we venture into a future where renewable energy and electric vehicles become commonplace, making the shift towards solar and battery systems is not just a smart business decision, but also a commitment towards sustainability.

It will also protect your business from energy price increases. Given the affordability of solar in today’s day and age and the continuous price decrease, it is certainly a good time to have a look because solar and in some cases even larger batteries do make sense for businesses. However, just like a residential solar system, other variables such as location, climate, surrounding environment etc will also need to be taken into account. 

Investing the time to thoroughly research and possibly consult with solar installation professionals will provide a more tailored understanding of how solar energy, batteries and maybe some EV charge stations can be integrated and beneficial in your particular business setting.

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