Personal Finance

ONT ONLY - microFIT solar panel program: 10-14% return for 20 yrs * FAT LADY HAS SUNG

  • Last Updated:
  • Dec 13th, 2017 6:05 pm
Jr. Member
Jan 15, 2007
192 posts
13 upvotes
Actual 2017 meter reading last night is 10934 KwH. Usually its over 12900 KwH from Jan - July.
Jr. Member
Aug 31, 2015
142 posts
28 upvotes
Scarborough, ON
I am at about 7.1MWh so far this year. In 2016 I hit about 13MWh for the full year. This year I am on track for about 11.5MWh if I double my Jan-June production.
Deal Expert
User avatar
Apr 21, 2004
41603 posts
10236 upvotes
7.33 MWh for my 8.8 kW system as of today. I wish they put in a few more panels at put a 10 kW inverter but I guess they had to scrimp because we had an agreed upon price.

Not going to sulk about it.
Member
Apr 27, 2014
243 posts
72 upvotes
Mississauga, ON
Since I'm looking around and it seems others are looking at installing now I'll share what I've found so far.

For a 10kW system cost I've been quoted in the 25,000-27,000 range and for my house and roof angles etc. will generate roughly 11,000kWh. This gives an ROI of somewhere around 12%.
Sr. Member
Jul 16, 2012
946 posts
1 upvote
Ottawa, Ontario
Hi all, great thread and very informative.
I live in Richmond near Ottawa and lowes are setting us up with solar brokers Canada for a consultation today.
We just moved into a 1 year old home and planning on living here at least 5 years.
Apparently our roof pitch and south facing side is ideal for a 10kW setup.

Anyone in the area recommend other brokers or installers?
The MicroFIT program sounds nice as well.
We are very new to this.

Thanks in advance :)
Marc
[OP]
Deal Guru
User avatar
Nov 18, 2005
10441 posts
1905 upvotes
Kingston
expatflame wrote:
Aug 2nd, 2017 11:08 am
Since I'm looking around and it seems others are looking at installing now I'll share what I've found so far.

For a 10kW system cost I've been quoted in the 25,000-27,000 range and for my house and roof angles etc. will generate roughly 11,000kWh. This gives an ROI of somewhere around 12%.
Keep in mind that this investment has very high illiquidity risk. Unlike stocks or mutual funds you can't sell it whenever you want "out". And if you sell your home before 20 years there is no guarantee or even evidence that you'll get your money back.
markkas wrote:
Aug 2nd, 2017 11:17 am
Hi all, great thread and very informative.
I live in Richmond near Ottawa and lowes are setting us up with solar brokers Canada for a consultation today.
We just moved into a 1 year old home and planning on living here at least 5 years.
Apparently our roof pitch and south facing side is ideal for a 10kW setup.

Anyone in the area recommend other brokers or installers?
The MicroFIT program sounds nice as well.
We are very new to this.

Thanks in advance :)
Marc
I don't know if Solar Brokers is still offering "free solar" but run don't walk away from those types of contracts. (More below)
Even if it is a "normal" microFIT deal where you are paying for it all yourself up front, with Lowes + Solar Brokers + Installer you have 3 parties involved.
I recommend getting multiple offers from experienced installers.
If you may only be in the house for 5 years there is a good chance you will experience a sizable loss.

Just had a look at Solar Brokers Canada website and it looks like they don't offer these "free solar" contracts any more. They were misleading, terrible deals for homeowners that violated the terms of the microFIT agreements. While they don't seem to offer these any more, I would still stay away from a company that sold these types of shady deals to homeowners.
Member
Apr 27, 2014
243 posts
72 upvotes
Mississauga, ON
JWL wrote:
Aug 2nd, 2017 3:38 pm
Keep in mind that this investment has very high illiquidity risk. Unlike stocks or mutual funds you can't sell it whenever you want "out". And if you sell your home before 20 years there is no guarantee or even evidence that you'll get your money back.
Yup it's definitely not a liquid investment but we've settled into hopefully our forever home now and this return will be leveraged so there are no other alternatives for the capital that will be deployed as banks aren't very interested in investment loans these days but they love government guaranteed microfit projects.
Member
Jul 16, 2006
394 posts
67 upvotes
Toronto
expatflame wrote:
Aug 2nd, 2017 11:08 am
Since I'm looking around and it seems others are looking at installing now I'll share what I've found so far.

For a 10kW system cost I've been quoted in the 25,000-27,000 range and for my house and roof angles etc. will generate roughly 11,000kWh. This gives an ROI of somewhere around 12%.
If you invest $25k for 20 years at 6%, you end up with around $80k.

If you use the $25k to install microfit and get 12%/annum, you will have $110k (assuming the proceeds are invested at the same 6%)

That's $30k extra, risk free (essentially), although I haven't considered taxes.

I guess its the lack of liquidity that kills it for some people.
Member
Apr 27, 2014
243 posts
72 upvotes
Mississauga, ON
Parps wrote:
Aug 2nd, 2017 4:14 pm
If you invest $25k for 20 years at 6%, you end up with around $80k.

If you use the $25k to install microfit and get 12%/annum, you will have $110k (assuming the proceeds are invested at the same 6%)

That's $30k extra, risk free (essentially), although I haven't considered taxes.

I guess its the lack of liquidity that kills it for some people.
Ya and again I'm not concerned with the liquidity here because the project is being financed i.e. none of my capital. There is no alternative as the banks aren't giving out 25k investment loans. Microfit is sort of like a mortgage for banks and regular people - a way to acquire incredibly cheap financing that would not exist otherwise.
Newbie
Sep 20, 2015
34 posts
19 upvotes
Ottawa, ON
just curious - why people are little hesitant to mention the exact quote with the name of installer? Is it against the policy that I am not aware of? Actually I am looking for an installer myself for 10K kWh system. Please PM me with your reference.
[OP]
Deal Guru
User avatar
Nov 18, 2005
10441 posts
1905 upvotes
Kingston
OttawaGuy2 wrote:
Aug 2nd, 2017 4:32 pm
just curious - why people are little hesitant to mention the exact quote with the name of installer? Is it against the policy that I am not aware of? Actually I am looking for an installer myself for 10K kWh system. Please PM me with your reference.
There is no policy against it, just not many Ottawa installs discussed in this thread. My installer in Kingston was Downunder Solar and I was happy with them.
Newbie
Apr 3, 2015
21 posts
4 upvotes
Ottawa, ON
We got ours installed by Isolara here in Ottawa in 2012. They were great to deal with, very thorough quote and helped with all the paperwork for MicroFIT and Ottawa Hydro. Quick to get back to me and repair when the squirrel guard needed repair.

'tuna
OttawaGuy2 wrote:
Aug 2nd, 2017 4:32 pm
just curious - why people are little hesitant to mention the exact quote with the name of installer? Is it against the policy that I am not aware of? Actually I am looking for an installer myself for 10K kWh system. Please PM me with your reference.
Newbie
Aug 3, 2017
3 posts
Long time reader, first time poster.

Had a rep from Quadra Solar to my door today in Ottawa and put me onto researching the microFIT program. Their pitch is $30,000 line of credit they've arranged with RBC at 3.35%, install 40 panels, equipment, ongoing maintenance @ approx $27,000 and then government program locked in for 20 years at 28 c/kWh. Is this similar to other deals folks in Ottawa have been seeing? I'm getting more information next week, but want to know the right questions to ask.

Overall this thread is very interesting.

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