Before you switch to solar, you’re going to want to read this

 ·11 Aug 2023

The journey to solar usually starts with a heavy sigh and more questions than your local Thursday night pub quiz. Reluctance and skepticism are no strangers at this part of the process, and with the deluge of product options, installers, and of course the actual rands and cents required to switch to solar, you are not alone in feeling a little uneasy about pulling the trigger.

The only emotion that trumps what you’re currently feeling, is probably your outright disdain for loadshedding, and that is usually enough to get most people’s engines (and tempers) fired up.

Question is… where to start?

Let’s approach this in three ways, which we’ve mentioned above, namely: products, financing and installers. We’ll try to help you understand the what, the how and the why, to make your decision a little less stressful.

When’s the last time you bought a solar panel?


It’s hard to know a good solar brand from a bad one without delving into the comments section of the plethora of solar forums out there. And before you lean on the logic of more expensive = better quality, take a moment before you click “add to cart,” or in this case sign off on a lengthy and complex solar quote with brands you’ve probably never heard of.

The fact is, we humans are comfortable to purchase items based on quality or price when we’re familiar with them. But when it comes to something like solar panels, inverters and batteries, you’re parting ways with a fair chunk of change with brands that until now have never crossed your mind.

The trick is to never settle because indeed, in solar, you get what you pay for. Your solar system needs to work for many years to come, be safe to operate in your house, come with all the warranties you’d hope for, and be easily replaced or upgraded.

Thing is, there are a lot of not-so-savoury solar products out there, masquerading as top-tier brands, simply by slapping on a hefty price tag. This means that you can’t simply rely on price-quality assumptions any more. The key here is to go with well-known, tier-1 brands, with a proven track record, good customer sentiment and are well-respected in the solar industry.

So let’s say you find the perfect solution. Now what? How do you pay for it?

Is there such a thing as solar finance? You bet your boathouse, buddy

Solar is as common in conversations these days as what you’re currently binge watching on Netflix. That’s why all the big financial players and a bunch of newcomers are cashing in on this land grab. And we say…let’s have more of it!

The more ways to finance your solar system, the more likely you’ll find the solution that works for you. From cash to asset-backed finance, to attaching to your existing home loan, and even new models such as solar-subscription services, there’s never been a better time to be a buyer in this market.

Each option comes with its own pros and cons, of course, and it’s important to understand exactly what the sweet spot is for your solution, and how to make it even sweeter.

Let’s keep going. You’ve found your perfect solar system. You’ve decided on how you’re going to fund it. Now for the final piece of the puzzle. Who’s going to install it?

How do you trust an installer who says he’s the best?

You don’t. That’s how.

Like we said, the solar industry right now is an absolute land grab. Every man with a bakkie and a ladder, who once proudly proclaimed himself to be an “electrician”, is now a self-anointed solar installer. It’s a shame that warning alarms and red flags don’t come standard with these guys.

The fact of the matter is, solar installations are complex. And we’re not only talking about the actual process of installing. It’s also about installing under South Africa’s stringent solar-installation regulations.

So when it comes to installers, do not skimp! Do not go with a friend of a friend or the guy who lives up the road, unless of course that guy is a registered and accredited solar installer. Think about the alternative… you’ve got a guy who claims to know what he’s doing, installing extremely complex and costly products, only for your system to not be signed off by your municipality because it doesn’t meet industry standards.

And that’s not even the worst-case scenario. How often does a house go up in smoke, largely due to two key factors: poor quality products and/or poor quality installers? Finding the right team to get the job done, and done well, is vital to the success of your solar journey.

It’s not all doom and gloom and loadshedding

With so much to consider, especially in this mostly uncharted path you’ve set out on, it’s important to have someone you can trust. Hohm Energy is that someone. Think of us as the Uber of solar. Just like Uber doesn’t own any cars or directly employ any drivers; we don’t sell any products, offer any finance or employ any installers.

We are simply the connector, aka the enabler or the solar marketplace.

Because we are not a product supplier, we don’t push any products onto our clients for our gain. We simply ensure that the products that are sold via our marketplace are pre-vetted, tier-1 products, with all the bells and whistles. We do not cut corners nor settle when it comes to the brands and products that we allow into our marketplace.

We also don’t have a preference for how you finance your solution. We just make sure that you’ve got all the finance options at your fingertip. Being South Africa’s first solar marketplace, we have the widest range of finance options including a first-to-market solar subscription service powered by Glint.

Lastly, we make sure the installers that work with us are top-notch operators. We pre-vet them for you, so you don’t have to. They don’t simply sign up to our marketplace. They have to answer to a lot before we let them in the door.

Once they’ve passed the first hurdles, they are rigorously trained in our Hohm School Solar Training Programme, to ensure that all installations meet our exceptionally-high standards. We do not favour any installers but rather let their good work and ratings speak for themselves.

To bring it all together, beyond matching all of the products, finance options and installers to your needs, Hohm also offers an end-to-end Energy Advisor that manages the entire process.

From the moment you generate your initial proposal, your dedicated Energy Advisor is on hand to talk you through the costs, conduct a virtual site visit, and help you land on the best solution for your needs. Once your installation kicks off we’ll be there every step of the way to ensure the job is done to your, and our, satisfaction.”

As the solar journey becomes more ubiquitous and commoditised, we’ll see more and more fly-by-nighters in the form of product suppliers, financiers and installers creeping up from the woodwork. Now, more than ever, is the time you need a trusted partner to see you through from start to solar.

Visit to read more about us, and sign up to generate your indicative proposal in under 5 minutes to get the process started!

If you’d like to chat to an Energy Advisor, feel free to book a no-obligation consultation here.

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