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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

Solar panels' green savings

By Angie Hicks




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) Erika Schweickert of Capital City Solar in Rocklin, Calif., has seen a surge the past couple of years in customers interested in investing in solar energy systems for their homes.

They're not investing thousands of dollars into solar systems because it's chic to be green; they're doing it because it makes good financial sense.

A solar energy system can significantly reduce — and in some cases eliminate — your monthly electric bills. Photovoltaic, or PV, solar systems, work by converting sunlight that hits solar panels on the roof directly into electricity through an inverter attached to the house.

Solar systems have become much more affordable in recent years. Photovoltaic prices are determined by watts, with the national average about $3 a watt, nearly half of what it was in 2010. Add to that a 30 percent federal tax credit available for residential solar panel installation good through 2016, plus a variety of rebates and incentives offered from local utilities, and it makes the investment significantly less. Systems can range in price from a few thousand dollars to $50,000 before credits, incentives and rebates kick in, depending on the manufacturer and how many panels are installed.

In most states, homeowners with solar photovoltaic systems can sell back extra energy they don't use to their local utility companies. Called "net metering," customers earn credits for excess solar energy sent to the utility provider's grid from their house. An Indianapolis couple said their bills averaged $20 a month.



With the cost of electricity only rising — Schweickert said California rates are increasing by 6 percent annually — investing in solar panels now is a way of investing in the future.

"Solar kind of hedges against those future rate increases," Schweickert said. "In California, electricity is really pricey, so we really try to get our customers out of those high tiers that tend to go up substantially. We call that 'tier-shaving.' All utilities are a little bit different. We have some customers that eliminate their bills completely on an annual basis."

The number of panels a homeowner needs depends on their energy consumption and the amount of daylight the home receives. Panels should be installed on the south-facing side of the house.

Panels require minimal maintenance. Schweickert recommends an annual cleaning and inspection. Most have 25-year warranties and are designed to last at least that long.

If you're thinking about adding a solar system, be sure to research the products and installers before you invest. Both Schweickert and Crook said quality of the panels can vary greatly, as can the quality of the installer.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

To comment or ask a question, please click here.

Since 1995, Angie Hicks has been dedicated to helping consumers get the real scoop on local service companies and health providers. Inspired by the frustrations her co-founder had trying to find reliable contractors in suburban Columbus, Ohio, she started Angie's List to help homeowners find who they should hire and who they should avoid.


Previously:


Tips to keep your appliances in good shape
Curb appeal is key in selling a house
The right and wrong ways to use (or abuse) your garbage disposal
Lawn Mower Tune-Up Time
Carpet Cleaning
Hardscaping: Homeowners upgrading outdoor areas
Dryer vent cleaning
Home automation
Central Vacuums
Know signs of a qualified locksmith
Mold Testing and Remediation
Most water softeners are fully automatic
Property sealing your home's envelope
New thermostats can 'learn' home's routine

© 2013, http://www.angieslist.com/ Distributed by MCT Information Services

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