Solar Power Goes Standard In New Homes

A new housing development in California’s Antelope Valley called Arroyo will offer solar power as a standard feature on all new homes, according to a joint announcement made this week by KB Home and the City of Lancaster.

We’ve previously written about KB Home’s solar efforts. The opening of this housing community is the first in a series of 11 developments in Southern California by KB Home that will feature solar power systems. Steve Ruffner, president of KB Home’s Southern California division, said, “The abundance of clear sunny days makes Lancaster the perfect place to own one of KB Home’s new solar homes. In addition to lessening a homeowner’s impact on the environment, the standard solar system may cut a homeowner’s energy costs by more than half.”

KB Lancaster

image via KB Home

KB estimates that a single-story three to four bedroom home with the included 1.35 kW system will have an energy bill of $94 per month. Homebuyers who upgrade to the 3.15kW system could reduce their energy bill to as little as $46 per month. In comparison, according to the 2008 American Community Survey, Lancaster residents reported spending, on average, about $210 a month on gas and electric bills.

The City of Lancaster waived municipal fees for the development and fast-tracked it through the approval process. “We are continuing to develop innovative solutions with KB Home. This private-public partnership is an example of what local governments throughout the nation should be doing in order to resuscitate their housing markets. We know we simply cannot sit back and wait for others to ‘fix’ the economy,” said City of Lancaster Mayor R. Rex Parris.

I am the editor-in-chief and founder for EarthTechling. This site is my desire to bring the world of green technology to consumers in a timely and informative matter. Prior to this my previous ventures have included a strong freelance writing career and time spent at Silicon Valley start ups.

    • Offering solar panels as a home package option is a great example of the paradigm shift that has taken place. Renewable energy sources are no longer only for hippies and the environmentally obsessed.nnAdditionally, the relationship KB Homes has developed with the city is amazing and unusual. City governments typically want the money for permits and inspections, with little interest in the product being built. It is very progressive of this community to decide building starts will help the economy. Hope they are right.n