As we head towards a carbon-neutral future, the number of Australian homes and businesses that now have solar panels on their rooves is heartening.
Unfortunately, when anything becomes popular, it attracts scammers. It can mean you end up with inferior panels that are inefficient, have short lives or could be a hazard to your home or business. In other cases, you are not delivered any materials at all. Here is how you are likely to encounter scammers and how to avoid them.
Scammers likely to use traditional channels
While websites are selling inferior quality panels or looking to exploit gullible shoppers, most solar panel cons come from more aggressive methods. This usually involves cold calling or door-knocking, where the salesman piles on the pressure to get you to sign on the spot.
The con works like this – you receive a phone call or house visit, and get fed stories about free solar panels or huge rebates that will pay for your entire installation. The only catch is they require an upfront payment. They rush you into the decision by saying there is only a limited time or a certain number of households that can cash in. Once they have your credit card or bank account details, the money is taken from your account, and you will never see them again.
Fortunately, instances of these kinds of cons are reducing. Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) data shows that unwanted telemarketing calls from false solar organisations halved from 2019 to 2020. Still, it is essential to remain vigilant and never feel pressured into purchasing a system that sounds too good to be true.
How to spot an online scam
While most con artists are using cold calls and door knocking, there are still plenty of non-reputable websites and online strategies designed to rip you off that you need to be aware of.
Some of the ads you might see can be misleading, and some can be downright dodgy. Any organisation leveraging government rebates or discounts in their advertising needs to be investigated. In many cases, they will lie about schemes finishing, or use government programs that don’t even exist.
Be alert and ask questions about any offer that looks too good to be true, as everyday Australians fall prey to online scams every day.
Take your time and enjoy the luxury of choice
We don’t cold call or door knock. Our mission is to get as many Australians as possible to transition to renewable energy solutions. To achieve that, we offer the best customer services and the most affordable rates for quality solar systems.
Our team works with household consumers, small business owners and commercial or industrial organisations to discover suitable options for your personal needs. We only source panels, inverters and battery solutions from the most reputable manufacturers, and our installers are local to your area and fully accredited.