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Neighborhood Sun

Community-shared solar — Making clean energy accessible to everyone.

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Proven track record of success already - in 2019 alone we completed and fully subscribed 4 major community solar projects with more than 2,000 households.
A mission-focused company with a B Corp score that leads the entire community solar industry!
Fastest growing part of the solar market. Community Solar is growing at more than twice the rate of all other solar combined - 53% 5 year growth versus 25
Built an industry-leading software platform that will help us achieve scale more quickly.
Market leaders in Maryland - went from 24% of Maryland market share to 36% in less than a year and are growing.
Featured in Business Insider, NPR, NBC, Solar Power World, and more!
2019 revenue grew by more than 100% while operating expenses grew by 27%.
Cost to acquire customers at half the industry average.

Our Team

I have been passionate about fighting climate change for most of my adult life. Founding Neighborhood Sun combines this passion of fighting climate change with the benefit of supporting locally produced power. It's the next logical step, supporting shared clean energy but also supporting stronger, local communities. 

Here Comes the (Neighborhood) Sun...

🎶 Do do do doo 🎶

Most Americans Cannot Get Affordable, Clean Solar Energy for Their Homes

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” — Margaret Mead

There are simply too many obstacles that prevent a typical household from participating in what most industry leaders agree is the future of power generation. Most Americans either don’t own their homes, don’t have a roof that optimally captures solar, or they don’t have the enormous resources (or desire) to install rooftop solar panels.

Let’s take a look at Stu Simon, a condominium owner in Maryland who cares deeply about the environment, but has no roof on which to install solar panels. Until a couple years ago Stu’s only option was to choose an alternative energy supplier that was 100% wind energy, but he was paying a premium for that service and found that the wind energy was sourced from out of state. He was “doing his part,” but yearned for a way to do more, do it locally, and do it for less money.

Get another glimpse of Stu’s story and others like his in this quick NBC segment on our Maryland Community Solar offer.

Community Solar to the Rescue!

“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference and you have to decide what kind of a difference you want to make.” — Jane Goodall

Back in 2001, Gary Skulnik was envisioning local solar farms built right here in Maryland. He loved the idea of solar access for all, fighting climate change, and supporting locally produced energy. However, up until 2015, the only way to get solar energy was to install something on your roof. That’s when Gary, working with environmental leaders in Maryland, helped pass the Community Solar Act to allow everyone in the state--homeowners, renters, and condo-owners alike--to share in the benefits of solar. It took a few years for the government to set up the program, but in 2018 it was ready to go, and Stu Simon was one of the first of thousands who subscribed in the first 18 months.

In addition to helping people like Stu, the Community Solar Act also was set up to make a significant portion of this new, clean source of power available to the often marginalized population of low and moderate income “working” families. The dream of power from the sun being available to everyone has been launched.

Why Is Community Solar the Fastest Growing Segment in the Energy Market? Because it is Simple.

Community solar is one of the easiest and most affordable ways to get clean energy powering homes. Here’s how it works with Neighborhood Sun:  

1. Interested households select a community solar plan in their utility territory. All provide savings, but may differ on contract length, electricity savings, and other terms. They choose the option that works best for their circumstances.

2. They enter their electric utility account & billing information.

3. Their historical electricity needs are analyzed (with information provided by their utility) and they are assigned a share of a community solar project. That share will supply most of their home’s electricity needs (roughly 80%).

4. The solar energy that is generated by their share of the solar farm as “solar credits” and reduces their electricity bill by the full utility rate for that power.

5. They pay Neighborhood Sun each month for those solar credits at a guaranteed lower rate than what your utility is charging them to power their home with dirty energy.

6. The electricity that isn’t covered by their community solar share (roughly 20%) is simply paid to their electric utility provider.

7. And finally, our dedicated team works with the customer, if needed, at every step of the way--helping them choose the best community solar plan, understand their billing details, and adjust their solar share size.

    And that’s it! No solar panels installed on the roof or property. There are no fees to join and no one needs to change their utility provider. It takes only minutes on the computer or over the phone to get their home powered with local, clean energy. It can be done during a lunch break (which happens often) and there is still time to eat.

    How Do We Generate Revenue?

    Simply put, we make money by filling up community solar projects, and managing those customers. We’re great at it because Neighborhood Sun’s business model is not typical. Since 2017, we have enrolled more than 2,500 Maryland households through community networks, customer referrals, and partnering with long-standing organizations that have deeply loyal participants.

    Our channel partners work with us in ways no other community solar company can match. Our work with progressive faith institutions, environmental groups, non-profits, and other organizations is only made possible by our strong brand credibility and pleased customers. We fill projects with communities of people, rather than one household at a time.

    Within three months, we completely filled three of our community solar projects, totaling over 1,500 households - one of those projects being the largest privately-funded residential community solar project in the country.

    Each time we fill a project, community solar developers around the country take notice and look to partner with us. We get paid to fill and manage their projects, and no one does it better.

    The Maryland market is bringing another 25 Megawatts into the area, and we have the opportunity to expand into other states, such as New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Colorado. Continued growth is all but assured.

    What Sets Us Apart

    Neighborhood Sun is without competition in the way that we solely acquire and manage customers for community solar. We fill the roles that otherwise require two or more companies to manage separately. We are recognized with a 5-star rating on Google Reviews because of the seamless transitions that are made through a customer’s development from prospect to subscriber to brand ambassador.

    In addition, we're a certified B Corporation and want to use our business as a true force for good--it's baked into our corporate DNA. As such, we continuously meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. We are not just accountable to our shareholders, but to all our stakeholders, such as our employees, customers, the community around us, and our planet.

    Society’s most challenging problems cannot be solved by government and nonprofits alone. The B Corp community works toward reduced inequality, lower levels of poverty, a healthier environment, stronger communities, and the creation of more high quality jobs with dignity and purpose. By harnessing the power of business, B Corps use profits and growth as a means to a greater end: positive impact for their employees, communities, and the environment.

    An essential aspect of the Neighborhood Sun business model is our commitment to our corporate values:

    🔆  Transparency
    🔆  Customer-focused
    🔆  Integrity
    🔆  Sustainability
    🔆  Innovation

    That is why Neighborhood Sun established our Customer Advocacy Board (CAB).

    The CAB is a group of proactive, passionate customers who want to help our company and our cause because they care are invested in their success. They work together with their company to help in a variety of ways. This includes:

    1.  Being consulted by the company on decisions that will affect the customers
    2.  Bring concerns to the company that they or the customers they represent have
    3.  Field test ideas the company may have, to measure impact and reception
    4.  Brainstorm new solutions for any problems the company is having

    Together, We'll Build a Solar Community

    Your investment will enable us to bring community solar to even more people by dramatically expanding our footprint. This means we’ll be able to reduce greenhouse gas emissions more quickly, increase the value of the company, and address energy equity in more cities. We will use the funds we raise to:

    1.  Improve our proprietary software platform for customer management
    We’ll upgrade our software platform to allow community solar to scale through greater marketing and sales efforts. This platform will service customers, solar asset owners, and sales organizations that want to join our solar revolution. From a business perspective, this will enable Neighborhood Sun to see even more recurring revenue through our own customer management services as well as licensing out the software to others.

    2.  Expand to new markets
    Community solar is rapidly expanding across the U.S. and we are looking to enter several new markets, such as New York, New Jersey, Illinois, and maybe even Colorado, among others.

    3.  Hire senior management
    While we have a CEO/Founder with years of experience and a great advisory board, we would like to bring on a COO/CTO and a CFO to help us develop strategies to scale our business.