Hello and Happy New Year from the team at QSA. Our apologies for being away for an extended period of time, but we had certain logistical issues to sort through which kept us quiet for a while.
Well now that we are back and have so much ground to cover with what has been a very busy time in terms of solar and what the Abbott government has tried and failed to do….. so far, with the STC’s, there is lots to cover. Firstly though we are very keen on steering people in the right direction with accurate advice and relevant comments, and with this in mind it has come to our attention that another organisation with the same noble objectives may well be having the opposite effect with its latest report.
While we applaud the likes of Choice consumer magazine offering information on Solar Panels, Inverters and Systems we have recently read their published report. Sadly, we have found the way they have published their results and the generalisation they have made within it, could possibly lead people to make not only the wrong choices in terms of quality, but it may also steer them towards more costly systems sold by the pushy salesmen we at the QSA take a big dislike towards. The following comment was submitted by the Sales Manager at SAE Group and sums up one of the problems with the Choice report which generalises the price of the average system fitted for those who took part in the survey at over $8,000. He has kindly given us permission to print his comments.
“Further to my earlier comments on your article I would have to add that the prices quoted as being on average are also misleading as the price of panels and installation have been dropping steadily every year. So the average price you are quoting as for what people have previously paid will lead new customers to believe they should be paying those kinds of prices too. In actual fact the ball park figure for a decent quality solar system in the range of 1.5 – 5 kW is around $1,200 to $1,500 per kW meaning a 5 kW system should cost between $6,000 to $7,500. There are plenty of cheaper systems on the market with small local firms getting special deals on sub-standard panels being imported, and there are plenty of companies who charge way over the mark, up around $9,000+ for exactly the same system as the mid-range companies. The difference in price is buyer beware on cheap systems and where high priced systems are concerned, you need to do your company research and a good give away that you are paying over the odds is if you ask for a price on your “sisters” place which is a low-set home while yours is a high-set home and hers has a metal roof while you have tiles, she is single phase power and you are 3 phase. Usually, the flashy salesman with the overpriced package will do both at the same price in a “special deal”. A genuine company will look at all the different variables and offer a cheaper price on your “sisters” place as it is a cheaper and easier fit out”.
Lee has made an initial comment on the site that details many of its flaws and how it may steer the unwary buyer towards the wrong choices, and we are looking to contact him again, in order to ask his permission to reprint his comments here, so there will be more to come on this later.
As a general rule we would suggest a price range of $1,000 – $1,500 per kW with a solar company that has been in operation for at least 3 years.
Still not sure what to look for when purchasing a Solar Power System? Click below and one of our experienced team will be happy to answer all your solar related questions!