WHAT WE'VE LEARNED SO FAR:
If you are considering developing a sizeable PV installation in your backyard, consider the following:
Beware of Cowboys:
There are many people who purport to have the expertise and skills, but in our experience genuine expertise on larger scale systems is very thin on the ground.
Look for a UK track record:
Don't just buy on price. Ask for evidence of UK implementations, as our conditions are very different from elsewhere.
Don't relinquish control:
Own your own asset and avoid selling out to private equity or venture capital. Think long term — including the improved value to your property — and seek out asset finance.
Location, location, location:
Make sure you have the best orientation to capture the sun's radiation.
Ensure all the paperwork IS in order:
Unfortunately, connecting to the grid requires a great deal of paperwork. Remember you are tying in to a 'living organism' and it comes with some responsibilities and a need to understand your obligations.
Aerial view, 3 July 2011: 10,000 panels in place. Rhosygilwen's Oak Hall is in the foreground.