Co-ops Go Solar

Free technical advisement and support for HDFC co-ops considering solar energy.

Co-ops Go Solar, a collaboration between nonprofits UHAB and Solar One, empowers low-income homeowners across New York City to access a sustainable and resilient future for their community-led affordable housing. We make renewable energy easy with education, advisement, and support for HDFCs thinking about solar.

Interested in solar for your HDFC? Contact Clara by email or at (212) 479-3337, or fill out the survey.

Did you know? The first building to adopt solar in New York City was Heartstone HDFC in the Lower East Side in the late 1970s. Community-controlled housing deserves community-controlled energy!

Visit UHAB’s archive to learn more!

Solar is for everyone!

Whether you use a third party ownership option like a power purchase agreement or a low-interest loan to install solar in your HDFC, there are ways to go solar without an upfront purchase– and start saving right away.

Can’t get solar on your roof? You can sign up for offsite panels through community solar and see savings on your electric bill right away.

See what shareholders are saying

“We were very lucky in this. It could have been a lot more expensive, and we ended up being able to take advantage of some really great rebates and refunds. We had people there to answer questions, and we were part of a group of people getting solar at the time so we could take advantage of discounts through bulk purchasing. We did work, but it would have been so much more work for us if we were not able to partner with the community programs that we did.”

Shay G., former board member in a solar HDFC

What is convincing to shareholders is not having to raise maintenance fees in the future because we are saving money. This is a good selling point in addition to going green!”

Sybille G, board member

In The News

Go Solar Helps Buildings Plug Into Sun For Power

The Villager – November 16, 2018 – “This October, Pfandler’s building at E. Second St. and Avenue C finally was finally able to plug into sun power through the Co-ops Go Solar campaign. The effort is a partnership between two nonprofits, the Urban Homesteading Assistance Board and Solar One, to provide housing development fund corporation (H.D.F.C.) cooperatives with technical assistance to retrofit buildings with solar panels.” Read More.

Harnessing The Sun to Power Equitable Development in NYC

Next City – November 7, 2018 – “Solar One recently launched the “Co-ops Go Solar” campaign in partnership with the Urban Homesteading Assistance Board, a nonprofit that supports residents to form and maintain co-op buildings. The campaign provides free technical assistance, cost estimates, roof inspections, financial incentives and funding options to install solar panels on limited-equity cooperatives — a particular form of co-op subsidized by the city to make homeownership available for low-income households. Co-ops that sign-on join a purchasing group to negotiate for lower prices.” Read More.

Here’s a Smart Solar Installation Program for Affordable Housing You Should Copy

Solar Builder – December 6, 2018 – “Our joint partnership through SUN has provided education, free technical assistance, and financing options for HDFC co-ops, empowering residents to make informed decisions about if and how to use renewable energy for themselves,” said Sasha Hill, UHAB Project Associate. “When residents get power to make decisions, you can expect outcomes like this: a focus on continued affordability and sustainability for the future.” Read More.

Affordable Solar Comes to Affordable Co-ops

Habitat Magazine – April 4, 2018 –  “’In the fall of 2016 we hosted a series of training sessions for shareholders and board members through UHAB (Urban Homesteading Assistance Board),’ Heckler recalls. ‘One session was about energy efficiency. Two technical consultants came to a training session, and they talked our building through what it would look like to do this project. It seemed feasible for us to go solar.’ Income from the co-op’s flip tax was crucial.” Read More.