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Residential Solar

Adding solar to a single-family residence can be a significant decision for any homeowner. When searching for the right contractor and exploring the vast array of products and financing options available, the Nevada State Contractors Board wants to ensure every homeowner is aware of their rights – and the responsibilities of properly licensed contractors!

Advertisements & Solicitations

Homeowners should always be cautious of unsolicited door-to-door sales individuals. Never let someone into your home you do not know or have not personally scheduled an appointment with.

Any person who is advertising or making a solicitation to perform or enter into a contract for residential solar work must have a proper Nevada contractor’s license or be properly authorized under state law. Nevada law requires a contractor to display their contractor’s license number on all advertisements, company vehicles, bids/estimates, contracts, etc.

QUICK TIPS IF APPROACHED BY A SOLAR SALES PERSON!

  • Ask for the contractor’s name and license number before engaging in discussions.
  • Quickly verify the contractor’s license has an “Active” status on the Board’s website (www.nscb.nv.gov) or mobile app (NSCB Mobile).
  • Do not be pressured into signing a contract on the spot! Legitimate contractors will give you time to make an informed decision and obtain other bids.
  • Contact the Contractors Board to report unlicensed contracting activities, or local law enforcement if you feel your safety is in jeopardy.

COMMON RED FLAGS

  • A sales person is not properly licensed by the Nevada State Contractors Board to perform residential solar work (licenses from other states are not valid in Nevada).
  • A sales person indicates they “hire” or “work with” a local licensed contractor to perform the installation – this usually indicates you are dealing with an unlicensed contractor, which can place you at increased risk of financial harm and liability.
  • Aggressive sales tactics – always trust your instincts!

 

What Homeowners Need To Know
  • A licensed contractor is required to construct, repair, maintain, restore, alter, or improve solar systems on single-family residences, inclduing the replacement of existing equipment and installation of new equipment (search for and verify a contractor’s license at.(www.nscb.nv.gov)
  • Take time to read and fully understand all contract terms and requirements, especially with regard to financing options. These matters are complex and should be thoughtfully considered before deciding.
  • You are required to initial all provisions of the contract once read and understood. A legible copy of all documents signed and a written/signed receipt for money paid must also be provided to you.
  • Down payments are limited! See “Contract Requirements” below.
  • A contractor must start work within 30 days after the date all necessary permits and approvals from the electric utility are received. A contractor who receives payment cannot refuse to perform work agreed to in the contract for any 30-day period.
  • You have the right to:
    • Contact the Nevada State Contractors Board or the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada if you need assistance clarifying any of the provisions in the contract you may not understand.
    • Request a bond for payment and performance.
    • Contact an attorney for an explanation of your rights under a contract.
    • Request a copy of the contract in the language it was verbally explained.
  • A contract can be voided if the contractor fails to adhere to the requirements of the law after October 1, 2021.


Responsibilities Of Licensed Contractors
  • Must apply for and obtain all necessary permits.
  • Must meet the requirements of the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada or other systems for the distribution of electricity the work will interconnect.
  • Must furnish a mechanic’s lien release for the portion of work for which payment was received, unless a payment and performance bond or joint control is furnished by the contractor.
  • Must provide a written statement explaining the rights of the consumer (NRS 598.9801 to 592.9822).

 

Contract Requirements (contracts must be written in at least 10-point type)
  • Contractor Info: Contractor’s name, address, license number, and monetary limit
  • Owner Info: Name and mailing address of owner where work is being performed.
  • Contract Date & Estimated Completion Date
  • Description of Work to be Performed
  • Contract Value: Total amount to be paid to the contractor by the owner of the single-family residence for all work to be performed under the contract, including applicable taxes.
  • Down Payment: Initial down payment or deposit – not to exceed $1,000 or 10% of the aggregate contract value, whichever is less – to be paid before the start of construction.
  • Disclosures: Owners should be provided disclosures required under NRS 624.600, as well as the full retail price of a kilowatt-hour, any offsetting tariff and the identity of the electric utility that furnishes electric service at the time the contract is executed.
  • Change Orders: Statement that any change orders must be agreed to in writing by both parties and incorporated into the original contract as such to be deemed enforceable.
  • Plans & Drawings: For new residential solar projects (does not apply for repairs exclusively), a plan and scale drawing showing the shape, size, and dimensions/specifications for the construction and equipment to be installed.
  • Schedule of Payments: Dollar amount of any progress payment and the stage of construction at which the contractor is entitled to collect such payment. Payments must not be in excess of 100% of the value of the work performed on the project at any time, excluding financing charges, except for the initial down payment.

 

Consumer Protections Enhanced!

Effective October 1, 2021, licensed contractors who perform work on residential solar photovoltaic systesm must adhere to heightened requirements in an effort to better protect the public engaging in residential solar projects (Senate Bill 303, 2021 Legislative Session).