It is no secret: solar energy can benefit businesses of all types – from small retail stores and offices to giant corporations, warehouses, and even self-storage facilities. Some of the largest companies in the U.S, such as Walmart, Costco, and IKEA, have installed solar on their properties and are making commitments for 100 percent renewable energy.
If your self-storage business is new to solar energy, you might wonder how it can directly benefit you. The good news is that there are many advantages to adopting renewable energy. Let us explore the top 10 reasons why your business should go solar:
- Reduce electricity and operational expenses
Self-storage businesses can decrease their utility bills by going solar. Due to net metering laws, solar customers can give the excess energy they produce using solar back to the electricity grid and receive credits that lower their utility bills. With the right solar experts helping you design your commercial solar energy system, businesses can use the credits they have gained during peak-sunshine hours to compensate for low sunlight levels. This means solar can help you improve your operating margins across the year.
- Increase property value
As real estate buyers become more educated about the advantages of solar, appraisers increasingly consider the value it adds to buildings. According to the American Association of Appraisers, buildings with solar PV arrays have a higher market value and a greater resale value as well. Businesses are always looking for ways to increase their assets, and solar is the perfect way to do it. Are you worried about higher values on your property tax bill? Solar energy is exempt from property tax assessments in many states.
- Take advantage of government benefits
Businesses can take advantage of federal and state government policies that reduce the cost of installing solar and the company’s corporate tax amount. For example, the Federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC) allows businesses to receive a dollar-for-dollar reduction on their taxes. Additionally, many state governments have their own programs that add to renewable energy’s economic benefits and can further reduce the initial cost of installing solar. For non-profit organizations, public entities, and companies without taxable income, the benefits come in the form of a lower cost per kilowatt-hour through a power purchase agreement framework.
- Prove that your business follows market trends
Businesses of all types, including in the self-storage industry, face a growing pressure from their shareholders, customers, and even employees to “go green.” Hence, having a renewable energy strategy for your business is no longer a differentiator – it is practically a market necessity. By going solar, you can prove your commitment to customers through solar and other sustainability measures.
Self-storage is a great fit for a corporate sustainability strategy. Extra Space Storage, one of the largest self-storage companies in the United States, began installing solar on their rooftops in 2010. According to Joe Margolis, Chief Executive Officer of Extra Space Storage, solar is a big part of the company’s corporate sustainability program and their effort to be “good corporate citizens.” In 2018, Pivot Energy announced a partnership with Extra Storage, intending to expand their solar operations.
- Increase your budget certainty
By going solar, you are locking in 20 plus years of predictable electricity costs. You will always know what you are paying for, unlike utilities that fluctuate significantly with the market. Solar stabilizes electricity costs over time by putting you in greater control of your overhead. As electricity rates rise, you can hedge against fluctuating energy costs.
- Reduce climate risk and its threat to businesses
It is in the best interest of businesses to also consider the benefits of solar energy to the environment. Switching to renewable resources can help companies be resilient against fuel volatility, extreme weather events, and regulatory risks such as caps on carbon emissions. Solar can help businesses stay ahead of the curve and mitigate the climate-related risks that may impact them in the future.
- Cutting edge technology
By going solar, you are getting cutting edge technology and investing in the future. There is something to be said about early-adopters rushing to get the latest gadget. Still, solar photovoltaics (the science of turning the sun’s light/photons into electricity) is now tried and true technology. The same technology on your roof was first used in the 50s and 60s on American satellites. While solar technology has advanced tremendously over the years, becoming more efficient and robust, the most significant changes in recent years are that it is more accessible and less expensive than ever before! An MIT study found that the cost of solar technology dropped 97% from 1980 to 2012. While costs continue to go down (think Moore’s Law), things have largely plateaued.
- Solar is low maintenance
Solar is a very inert form of electricity generation with no moving parts, so solar arrays do not require routine maintenance beyond preventive care. This makes going solar easy over the long term, and many solar providers, including Pivot Energy, provide operations and maintenance to keep your mind at ease.
- Create local jobs
When you decide to go solar and with your solar array, you support jobs directly in your community in the form of installers, electricians, and project managers. According to the US Bureau of Labor, before the pandemic, solar installers were anticipated to be among the fastest-growing jobs in the next decade, numbers growing at a rate 12x faster than the overall economy. The solar industry employs nearly 250,000 workers!
- Provide shade for your employees and customers
Beyond rooftop solar, you can also look at solar parking canopies to cover customer and employee parking spaces. Solar parking canopies generate electricity just like a rooftop solar array and connect to your building in a similar fashion. Plus, your employees and customers will benefit by having protection from the elements – no matter the season.
All things considered, businesses of all types – even self-storage properties – can greatly benefit from adopting solar. Beyond lowering utility costs, solar also increases property value, supports commitments to corporate sustainability, and reduces future risks to businesses.
The Pivot Energy team is ready to support your business in its renewable energy strategy. Reach out to speak with a member of our team.