After a dream of a process, we have a new working partnership with South Devon Rural Housing Association (SDRHA) to install solar PV on all of their suitable properties.  The solar panels will provide a source of free electricity for SDRHA tenants during daylight hours or to heat water when tenants are not at home during the day.

TRESOC has engaged local company, BECO Solar to carry out the work.  A preliminary desktop survey shows that over half of SDRHA’s properties are suitable for solar PV installations.  Site surveys will now be arranged with tenants to ensure that roof structure and electrical connections are suitable before preparing a final list of homes for viable solar PV installations.  Although not all roofs will meet the criteria, and therefore not all SDRHA tenants will benefit directly, local community investment will enable SDRHA to use its own resources to further improve the energy efficiency of its entire housing stock.

SDRHA has been installing solar PV for the benefit of its residents for some time, working with Transition Town Totnes’ Transition Streets initiative and through TTT’s current PV referral scheme.  TRESOC has now provided a solution that allows SDRHA to give some welcome relief from rising energy bills to many more tenants.

Steve Prime, SDRHA’s Chief Exec, commented for the upcoming press release,

“TRESOC’s community investment model is allowing us to benefit a large proportion of our tenants simply because TRESOC can operate at scale.  The fact that SDRHA tenants will benefit directly from lower electricity bills, and TRESOC’s local members will benefit from Feed in Tariff income is ideal.  And, not investing our capital in retrofit solar means that we can continue to explore other renewable energy technologies, allowing us to look to the future.  It’s a perfect model for any housing association.  Local money, local investment, what is not to like?”

The TRESOC team is delighted to be working on this project.  Funding for the scheme will come from the local community through a TRESOC share issue later this Spring.  Feed In Tariff payments will provide a return to potentially thousands of TRESOC members in the local community, adding further benefit to the local economy.