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Directory:Citizenre Corporation

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Citizenrē Corp

Aims to makes clean energy, beginning with solar, affordable for everyone in the U.S., and includes affiliate incentives.

Citizenrē Corporation is setting out to manufacture, install, permit, own, maintain, and operate residential solar photovoltaic (PV) system through a franchise system, as well as sell such systmes to commercial accounts.

Homeowners will rent the system from Citizenre at a rate based on a both the nameplate capacity of the rented system and the average rates currently charged by the local utility, to make the system affordable for all. The rent is fixed for the life of the contract (usually 25 years) at or below their current electricity price, while Citizenrē handles the engineering, procurement and construction.

Citizenre maintains that it is NOT providing electricity, but renting the equipment so that homeowners can generate their own. Citizenre is NOT an electrical provider.

CAUTION 
Citizenre: A House of Cards? - Jeff Wolfe asserts that the new multi-level distributor company that claims to be able to offer solar power at or below grid energy pricing toward the end of 2007 does not have its act together and is actually diverting solar customers away from real technologies to false hopes. (Renewable Energy Access; Feb. 12, 2007)
When the following concerns are addressed, then this caution statement may be removed
  • What is the name of the finance agency that will fund this launch (more than half a billion dollars)
  • Where is the funding agency's press release announcing this contract?
  • What solar technology are they using that can meet the price point required, taking all capital expenses into consideration?

Contents

About

Official Websites


Independent Direct Sellers ("Ecopreneurs")

Latest Developments

Original Timeline

  • ~Jan. 2007, groundbreaking for 500 MegaWatt manufacturing facility. 6-10 more will follow.
  • ~Jan. 2007, funding partners unveiled
  • ~Mar. 2007, begin electrician hiring and training; Citizenre will be announcing a wind power option using the same arrangement. They will embrace newer and more efficient technologies as they become available as well.
  • ~Jun. 2007, begin customer facility review by technicians and contract signing
  • ~Sep. 2007, begin installation

The company expected to install 100,000 units on homes in their first year.

Updated Timeline

  • ~Mar. 2007, funding partners unveiled
  • ~Apr. 2007, groundbreaking for 500 MegaWatt manufacturing facility.
  • ~Jan. or Feb. 2008, begin installation with reduced # of 2008 installations

The first two "updated" milestones have not been achieved as of July 25, 2007.

The expected timeframe for initial installations has slipped again to "mid-2008" as of August 22, 2007.

Update, April 14, 2008

Citizenre has now revised its prognoses to start some time in 2008. The Ecopreneurs have been informed of a variety of reasons why the timeline has had to be extended (as for so many other large undertakings) and most agree that they are willing to wait.

The company has already made 2 BETA installs, which took less than a full work day to accomplish. This is one of the aims to reduce costs. 1000 more BETA installs are planned for this year.

At present (April 2008) there are more than 30,000 homeowners throughout the United States who have signed up their houses for a system. A large percentage of these have also signed the Forward Rental Agreement. Talking with these customers, Ecopreneurs find that they do not mind the waiting period, because otherwise they would not be able to even consider having a PV system because of the cost. Potential customers who can afford to buy a system are counseled on where to find information to buy their own system.

Update, Feb 11th 2011

San Diego, CA (February 9, 2011) — The Citizenrē Corporation today announced that it has received and executed a funding commitment with Adam Capital, a private investment fund based in Sonoma, CA. Adam Capital has agreed to provide Citizenrē with an initial $20 million in funds, and subsequent funding rounds, over the next 18 months to fund Citizenrē’s goal to install 15 megawatts (MW) in residential solar photovoltaics (PV) systems.

Citizenrē has been providing homeowners the use of solar electric systems with immediate savings and no out-of-pocket costs throughout California since late 2009. This new agreement with Adam Capital will enable Citizenrē to expand in California and enter other favorable markets throughout the U.S.

When the company launched back in 2006, Citizenrē introduced a solar rental product that was a game changer and breakthrough for residential PV. The company’s vision of “PV for all” captivated over 37,000 customers in two+ years. During the intervening recession, the drop in PV component prices has enabled Citizenrē to deliver on its commitment – bring affordable PV to average homeowners.

Citizenrē entered the market in 2006 as a developer of decentralized, customer-directed electricity infrastructure, using proprietary business processes to deliver residential photovoltaic (PV) systems to customer homes at an industry-leading installation pace. PV is Citizenrē’s entry product. Products that follow will strengthen customers' ability to save money, manage their energy use, replace polluting with non-polluting fuels, and place their own needs at the core of their energy purchase and/or production decisions.

In 2009, Citizenrē began its pilot efforts in Southern California. In 2010, the company began to expand throughout California, and in 2011, Citizenrē is poised to introduce its PV rental products to markets in the west and beyond.

Overview

Company says they will install and maintain a solar system with grid-connect on your home for a 1-, 5-, or 25-year contract, if you live in an area that supports net metering. The contract locks you into a set electricity billing rate that is at the level that your utility company presently charges. In addition to that, you pay a security deposit, which amounts to from $500 to $1000, depending on the KWP size of the system, and is reimbursed at the end of the contract period if the contract is not renewed.

After assessing your energy usage and roof profile, the Citizenrē solar designer proposes an installation that will be appropriate for your present energy usage. Because customers' usage will vary and most utilities will not pay for "overgeneration," Citizenre plans to dimension the systems to within about 90% of current usage.

Because of net metering, the customer's utility acts as the "battery" in the system. The customer's payment to the utility will also include the utility connection, which serves as an energy buffer, while payment for used electricity will most likely be within the lowest tiers of the company's billing system.

Customers have no up-front investment to purchase a system, while Citizenrē takes care of all installing and maintaining an entire system.

If you don't want to renew the contract when it expires, Citizenrē merely removes the system and returns the deposit with interest. If you want the system removed before the end of the contract, all you lose is the deposit. (This is not a lease that has a time limit that has to be fulfilled.)

If you move, you can either transfer the contract to the new owner, or Citizenrē will move the system once for free during 25-year contract. After that, a moving fee applies.

Damage to the system that is not a function of manufacturer defects needs to be paid for by the customer, but will be repaired by Citizenrē corp. Most homeowner's insurance will cover the systems.

The site explains the stipulations of the contract quite well, without getting bogged down in legalese.


Citizenrē REnU program

Claims:

  • No system purchase
  • No installation cost
  • No maintenance fees
  • No permit hassles
  • No performance worries
  • No rate increases

As of April, 2008, the company agrees that its initial time frame was set too tight (typical start-up error) but expects actual activity in 2008.

Patents

The company claims to have 15 patents on the technology.


Coverage

- - - -

  • Is the Sun Rising or Setting on Citizenre Solar? - Company that intends to rent out solar power at rates competitive with local utilities has announced its financial team, though it has not yet secured financing, and may not be able to given the present credit crunch. (PESN; Aug. 22, 2007)
  • Selling Homeowners a Solar Dream - Wired reviews the affordable solar dream concept along with the skeptical views about whether it will actually happen at this time using this approach. House of cards, or wave of the future? (Wired; Feb. 21, 2007)
  • Citizenre: A House of Cards? - Jeff Wolfe asserts that the new multi-level distributor company that claims to be able to offer solar power at or below grid energy pricing toward the end of 2007 does not have its act together and is actually diverting solar customers away from real technologies to false hopes. (Renewable Energy Access; Feb. 12, 2007)
  • U.S. Homeowners Can Now "Rent" Solar Panels and Save Money - The Delaware-based business has launched a program that allows customers to “rent‿ the panels for specified periods of time, paying a per-kilowatt fee that takes the place of the local utility bill. (WorldChanging; January 12, 2007)
  • Citizenre has a plan to bring solar to the masses - Citizenre Inc. has a plan to bring solar power to more people than ever before by renting solar panels to homeowners. The equipment is backed by a performance guarantee with no purchase, maintainence or installation costs. (Earthtoys; Dec 27, 2006) [press release]
  • Citizenrē Introduces Home Solar PV Rental Program - Citizenrē's new REnU 25-year fixed rate residential solar electric system rental program allows homeowners in 40 states to choose green energy while eliminating the large upfront investment costs and premiums over power purchased from electric utilities. Homeowners "lock-in" their electricity rate for 25 year, while most electric utilities are increasing their rates 5% to 30+% every year. (Renewable Energy Access; December 7, 2006)

Comments

See Discussion page


Forum

Related Approaches

  • Home Depot Selling Solar to Mainstream America - Home Depot has teamed up with BP Solar to provide affordable solar installation service to customers. Financing options available, as well as free, in-home consultations. "Now you can save money on your electric bill, increase your home's value and make the world a cleaner place." (TreeHugger; Oct. 24, 2006)
  • LiteSolar - doing a similar thing as above, but for commerical buildings and apartments.

Contact

http://citizenre.net/web/index.php?p=contact

Leaning on associates to serve as the direct marketing function, the company site does not list a direct email or phone number for customers, but expects people to contact the person that referred them.

Their Delaware address is registered and can be looked up at https://sos-res.state.de.us/tin/GINameSearch.jsp

THE CITIZENRE CORPORATION
Contract Administration
501, Silverside Rd. suite 69
Wilmington, DE 19809

See also

Directory:Solar

- Other Directory listingsLatestA-IJ-RS-ZTreeNews
- PESWiki home page

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