Most apartment dwellers who want to use solar power probably won’t find it easy to convince their landlord to install panels on the roof. But there’s another option: A new startup will let anyone invest in solar panels remotely—and then get paid quarterly checks for the energy they produce.
“We’ve found in research that about 80% of people who want to get involved in solar don’t have the ability to do so,” says Cory Absi, co-founder of , which he launched with fellow students from MIT last year. “Whether that’s the initial prohibitive cost, or they don’t have the correct roof angle, or they live in an apartment building. We want to offer a new way of getting involved in solar energy.”
For $750, anyone can purchase a solar panel, which will be installed at a remote solar farm. Over the course of 25 years, the company estimates that the panel will generate about three times that value, from a combination of government incentives and money paid for the electricity. CloudSolar will take a 20% cut, and owners can expect to pull in about $70 a year.