It was only a matter of time before this happened and now it’s official. Most new homes in California will now be required to have solar panels on their rooftops. This is the first building code of its kind that was approved by the Building Standards Commission this week. There are some exceptions, though, but the code will apply to most new homes in the state.
Starting January 1st, 2020, new condos, homes, and low-rise apartments will be required to have solar panels on their rooftops for generating renewable energy. The code provides an exception for homes that are blocked by taller objects such as trees and properties that don’t have room for panels on the roof.
Some have expressed concerns whether this might lead to a further increase in property prices while not providing substantial energy savings. However, some estimates suggest that homeowners can save up to $60,000 over 25 years while also reducing the strain on the electric grid particularly during peak hours.
As previously mentioned, this is the first building code of its kind in the United States. It could serve as a blueprint for similar initiatives taken by other states. It remains to be soon, though, how soon other states follow suit.