Homebuyer Solar Option and Solar Offset Program

June 08, 2020


Senate Bill 1 of 2006, which established the statewide California Solar Initiative, also required the California Energy Commission (CEC) to implement regulations that require sellers of production homes to offer a solar energy system option to all prospective homebuyers. Besides offering solar as an option to prospective homebuyers, sellers of homes constructed on land for which an application for a tentative subdivision map has been deemed complete on or after January 1, 2011, must disclose to the prospective homebuyer the total installed cost of the solar option, the estimated cost savings associated with the solar energy system option, information about California solar energy system incentives, and information about the Go Solar California website.  

Sellers of production homes affected by this law may opt for the solar offset program rather than offer solar as an option to prospective homebuyers. The solar offset program requires sellers to install a solar system elsewhere which is equivalent to the aggregate capacity of solar that would have been installed in an affected subdivision if 20% of the buyers had opted for the solar option.

The regulations above provide greater detail about these two options and discuss the reporting requirements for sellers of production homes to demonstrate they are in compliance with the law.

Program Overview

Implementing Sector: State
Category: Regulatory Policy
State: California
Incentive Type: Building Energy Code
Web Site: https://www.cpuc.ca.gov/General.aspx?id=6043
Start Date:
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:
  • Solar Photovoltaics


Name: CA Public Resources Code § 25405.5, et seq.
Date Enacted: 08/21/2006
Name: 20 CCR 2700, et seq.
Effective Date: 3/24/2011


Name: Sherrill Neidich
Organization: California Energy Commission
Address: 1516 Ninth Street, MS-45
Sacramento CA 95814-5512
Phone: (916) 651-1463
Email: sneidich@energy.state.ca.us

This information is sourced from DSIRE; the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. Established in 1995, DSIRE is operated by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University.