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Title: Using Residential Solar PV Quote Data to Analyze the Relationship Between Installer Pricing and Firm Size

Abstract

The vast majority of U.S. residential solar PV installers are small local-scale companies, however the industry is relatively concentrated in a few large national-scale installers. We develop a novel approach using solar PV quote data to study the price behavior of large solar PV installers in the United States. Through a paired differences approach, we find that large installer quotes are about higher, on average, than non-large installer quotes made to the same customer. The difference is statistically significant and robust after controlling for factors such as system size, equipment quality, and time effects. The results suggest that low prices are not the primary value proposition of large installer systems. We explore several hypotheses for this finding, including that large installers are able to exercise some market power and/or earn returns from reputations.

Authors:
 [1];  [1]
  1. National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Solar Energy Technologies Office (EE-4S)
OSTI Identifier:
1351942
Report Number(s):
NREL/TP-6A20-68010
DOE Contract Number:
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 29 ENERGY PLANNING, POLICY, AND ECONOMY; solar PV; installation costs; soft costs; installer prices; quotes

Citation Formats

O'Shaughnessy, Eric, and Margolis, Robert. Using Residential Solar PV Quote Data to Analyze the Relationship Between Installer Pricing and Firm Size. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1351942.
O'Shaughnessy, Eric, & Margolis, Robert. Using Residential Solar PV Quote Data to Analyze the Relationship Between Installer Pricing and Firm Size. United States. doi:10.2172/1351942.
O'Shaughnessy, Eric, and Margolis, Robert. Sat . "Using Residential Solar PV Quote Data to Analyze the Relationship Between Installer Pricing and Firm Size". United States. doi:10.2172/1351942. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1351942.
@article{osti_1351942,
title = {Using Residential Solar PV Quote Data to Analyze the Relationship Between Installer Pricing and Firm Size},
author = {O'Shaughnessy, Eric and Margolis, Robert},
abstractNote = {The vast majority of U.S. residential solar PV installers are small local-scale companies, however the industry is relatively concentrated in a few large national-scale installers. We develop a novel approach using solar PV quote data to study the price behavior of large solar PV installers in the United States. Through a paired differences approach, we find that large installer quotes are about higher, on average, than non-large installer quotes made to the same customer. The difference is statistically significant and robust after controlling for factors such as system size, equipment quality, and time effects. The results suggest that low prices are not the primary value proposition of large installer systems. We explore several hypotheses for this finding, including that large installers are able to exercise some market power and/or earn returns from reputations.},
doi = {10.2172/1351942},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Sat Apr 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Sat Apr 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}

Technical Report:

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