For the fourth consecutive quarter, the U.S. residential solar market grew incrementally, installing 98.2 megawatts. California, Arizona, and New Jersey led residential installations nationally, with smaller-market states of Hawaii, Massachusetts, and Maryland demonstrating strong quarter-over-quarter growth.
In addition, the residential segment continues to be highlighted by consumer acceptance of third-party solar ownership models. The major state markets in California, Arizona, and Colorado all saw third-party residential solar companies like American Solar Direct account for greater than 70 percent of total Q2 2012 installations. U.S. Solar Market Insight: 2nd Quarter 2012 finds that in the California market, this quarter marks the first time that the average installed price of a third-party-owned system was lower than that of a system purchased outright: $5.64 per watt for third-party versus $5.84 per watt for directly-owned solar systems.
“We’re starting to see innovative PV business models take a substantial hold in the U.S. residential market,” said Shayle Kann, Vice President of Research at GTM Research. “The success of third-party residential solar providers has attracted more than $600 million in new investments in recent months. This influx of cash into the residential space signifies the growing acceptance of solar leases and power purchase agreements as a secure investment for project investors. We expect that third-party installations will claim even more market share in the coming quarters.”