KB Home boosting sales by offering solar

| by Teena Hammond
KB Home boosting sales by offering solar

To boost home sales, KB Home is tripling the number of communities in which it offers solar power systems as a standard option on every house.

The new program launched yesterday and includes high-efficiency SunPower solar power systems on the homes built in 28 communities across Southern California. Beginning in March, the Los Angeles-based builder began offering 1.4 kWp SunPower systems in 10 communities. The resulting sales increase was high enough to warrant adding it in an additional 18 communities, as well as stepping up the size of the solar power package, said Craig LeMessurier, spokesman for KB Home.

"What we're seeing in our surveys is that every homebuyer is looking at a way to reduce their monthly costs associated with a home. Obviously solar does that. It's a good way to get their monthly energy costs down and reduce the cost of home ownership," LeMessurier said. "They like green if it saves them money."

Solar is available in one of three standard sizes. The size of the home's roof determines which size of solar package the home will include. The smallest available is a 1.8 kilowatt peak (kWp) package, and it reduces electric bills by an estimated 40 percent. The next size is 2.25 kWp, which produces enough solar energy to reduce electric bills by approximately 60 percent. The largest size package is 3.15 kWp, and it reduces energy costs by approximately 80 percent.

"Consumers who buy a Built to Order KB home get the value of a custom home-like experience plus the tremendous energy efficiency of our latest advanced building techniques. And now, having solar included is like having the sun help pay their energy bills," said Jeffrey Mezger, president and chief executive officer of KB Home, in a press release. "The response to our solar initiative has been overwhelmingly positive, and we are excited to expand our program so that many more homebuyers in Southern California can take advantage of this unique opportunity."

"SunPower is proud to be a part KB Home's industry-leading commitment to offer solar power systems as a standard feature in 28 of its Southern California communities," said Howard Wenger, president, regions for SunPower, in the release. "As the world's most efficient and reliable solar technology on the market today, SunPower technology delivers proven performance that can provide long-term significant savings."

For more information, see our Solar Power for Homes research center.

Topics: Photovoltaic / Solar Panels, Solar Power, Sustainable Communities

Teena Hammond
Teena Hammond has published more than 2,000 articles in People and W magazines, Women's Wear Daily, and in dozens of newspapers and books. She also wrote a home improvement, remodeling and decor column that ran in Gannett newspapers nationwide. She's interested in all things green and would love to hear from you with your story ideas.

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