Why we care about solar energy

According to the Government, in 2020 around 20% of carbon emissions came from homes. Source: Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy, 2020 UK greenhouse gas emissions, provisional figures, March 2021.

We can all make a difference to our carbon footprint. And changes like installing solar panels can help bring us closer to being net-zero.

Solar panels capture the sun’s energy and make electricity. You can then use that green energy in your home like normal. You can even store it for later if you have a battery.

Get help from the experts

We want you to be able to get all the help you need before you decide to get solar panels for your home. That’s why we’ve teamed up with solar experts, MakeMyHouseGreen.

MakeMyHouseGreen is powered by Switchd. They’re a company we already partner with to automatically switch our members’ energy tariffs to be on the best deal.

Nationwide Building Society has invested in Switchd and pays them a monthly fee for the use of their solar quotation tool.

Ever thought about solar panels for your home?

We’re looking for 300 Solar Pioneers to join our pilot and install solar panels on their homes.

Use our Nationwide Solar Calculator to get an idea of how many solar panels you might need. It will also estimate the cost and how much you’ll save on your energy bills.

As a Solar Pioneer, you’ll be asked for feedback along the way. We'll want to know how you’re finding it, why you chose solar and what it was like to join our pilot.

With your help, we can make the move to solar simpler.

To qualify for the solar pilot scheme

You need to:

  • be a house owner – owner occupied or residential landlord
  • live in Wiltshire, Dorset, Hampshire or East Sussex
  • be able to fund the solar panels through your savings or be eligible for finance options
  • be allowed to make changes to your roof.

Things to consider before moving to solar

There are a few things to think about before becoming a Solar Pioneer. We want you to be confident that it's the right choice for you and your home.

Using solar panels day to day

You’ll need a smart meter to sell excess energy back to the grid. Excess energy is all the power your solar panels make but that you don’t need.

You’ll also need home insurance that covers solar panels. This is in case they get damaged. Look around and compare quotes to make sure you’re getting the cover you need.

Sometimes, solar panels or the battery can get damaged or be faulty. If they’re still under warranty, MakeMyHouseGreen are there to help. They offer service and support to their customers, including getting the panels repaired or replaced. You may also be able to claim on your home insurance if the damage is due to a storm or similar.

Making the right choice for you

Always think about the cost to install solar panels as well as the possible savings. Especially if you’re moving home as the panels and any guarantees are usually sold with the house. Make sure it’s the right choice for you.

We expect solar panels to last for around 25 years. And there are 2 Which? recommended solar panel options in the Calculator. 


How to sign up for our solar pilot

  1. Find out how many panels you might need

    Use the Nationwide Solar Calculator to get an idea of how many solar panels you might need. It will also estimate the cost and how much you’ll save on your energy bills. 

  2. Call the experts and get a quote

    Use the Calculator to book a call with one of MakeMyHouseGreen’s solar experts. They’ll talk you through your options and make recommendations based on your needs. They’ll even do an online survey of your home before they send you a detailed quote.

  3. Book an install date 

    If you want to go ahead with installing solar panels, you’ll need to book an install date and pay a £200 deposit. The panels and battery will arrive at your home on the install date. 

  4. Pay the final balance – and enjoy being a Solar Pioneer!

    You’ll need to pay 55% of the installation cost at least 7 days before the solar panels are installed. The remaining money needs to be paid on completion. And don’t forget to let us know how you’re finding it, why you chose solar and what it was like to join our pilot. Your feedback will help others just like you.