SolarList. An app that empowers and pays students and young entrepreneurs to educate homeowners about their options for going solar by providing free home solar assessments

Created by Michael Conti.

I'm a Designer in Brooklyn, NY. I work at SolarList. Previously, I've worked at Hudson Clean Energy Partners, Deutsche Bank, Bloomberg New Energy Finance. I earned a M.A. from Columbia University.

Project Description

SolarList has built the solar industry’s only instant, mobile solar assessment tool that calculates a homeowner’s costs & savings for a range of financial options, making it simple to understand how to go solar. We train students and young entrepreneurs to educate homeowners about their solar options by providing free, third-party solar assessments with our app. Educated homeowners are then referred to our preferred network of installers.

With SolarList, homeowners pay less, installers sell more solar, and young entrepreneurs get paid – Everybody wins.

NYC Solar Market Challenges: According to Solar One, NYC could install enough rooftop solar to supply 40% of the City’s electricity during peak demand, but has only tapped 0.17% of its full potential ( Equipping NYC roofs with solar would create hundreds of jobs in the City and substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions. However, high customer acquisition costs hinder the market’s growth. SolarList's unique solar assessment app and our cutting edge business model is already at work accelerating the adoption of solar in other states. SolarList will accelerate the adoption of residential solar in NYC by reducing high customer acquisition costs in the outer boroughs with the help of our mobile app and solar education campaign.

Our team of solar analysts, programmers and designers has analyzed these challenges for 18+ months. Team members have worked for Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Hudson Clean Energy, and Lawrence Berkeley National Lab and have degrees in energy finance and sustainability management from Columbia, Berkeley, North Western, and U.of Florida. We launched our app in February and have run successful missions w/colleges in CA, CT and NJ where we’ve also delivered product to clients, proving our economic viability (business model validation: We’re a Brooklyn company and will use the prize money to invest in growing our NYC solar education initiative!

Project Goals

  • Release a working product and validate business model: completed

  • Enhance the user experience with improved graphics and data visualizations: completed

  • Build ancillary software tools that support the primary software product (eg. CRM tool): completed

Project Updates

SolarList Referenced by David Gilford in Advanced Energy Economy News Guest Post

June 7, 2013

Guest Post by David Gilford, Assistant Director of the New York City Economic Development Corporation, leading the City’s programs to support the growth of the clean technology and advanced energy industries. Follow him on Twitter @dgilford.

"Software can help squeeze the most value out of each dollar we invest in advanced energy hardware, from better targeting of energy efficiency retrofits to reducing the “soft costs” of permitting, financing and installing rooftop solar. Equally important is the economic development opportunity, for local entrepreneurs are creating solutions that could lead to scalable, global businesses.

To encourage such innovation, NYCEDC held the first Cleanweb Developer Day, sponsored by AEE and organized in partnership with Solar One, Pure Energy Partners, NYC ACRE and the Cleanweb Initiative. From morning to night on Saturday, May 18, teams built software for NYC BigApps, supported by mentors from the energy industry, as well as from Internet companies like Google and Rackspace.

By the end of the day, the nearly 100 participants produced 16 projects, from a crossword puzzle-style game that teaches energy literacy to a “Google Street View” to visualize future flood levels. Judges awarded cash prizes to six teams, including the overall winner, Solar List, whose iPhone application gives college students the tools to evaluate potential residential solar installations, giving young people sales experience and reducing customer acquisition costs for solar installers.

The Developer Day lasted only 14 hours, but the innovation continues. Having passed this milestone along the three-month NYC BigApps competition, teams continue to be hard at work ahead of the June 7 submission deadline..."

SolarList blog posts chronicle our business development...

June 7, 2013

Recent Blog Posts:

> SolarList receives Made in NY mark of distinction!

> SolarList gets a face lift for NYC BigApps Competition

> SolarList pitches live at Clean Energy Connections Cleanweb event

> Lean Solar Startup: Pivoting our Minimum Viable Product four times in a year

> NYC Big Apps Cleanweb Hackathon: SolarList won!

> Sell more solar by educating and aligning your interests with customers

> We’re live in three states: Princeton “TigerWatts” mean business

> Educating vs Selling in Solar

> Building our Ground Forces: Yale students shine (Project) Bright

> Canvassing Berkeley… Business Model Validation: Check

SolarList pitches live at Clean Energy Connections Cleanweb event (5/18)

June 7, 2013

After winning the NYC BigApps Cleanweb Developer Day Hackathon we were invited to pitch our product at Clean Energy Connections! Thanks to Greentech Media who covered and livestream’d the whole event.

We kick off at about 19:31...


GTM Coverage:

NYC Big Apps Cleanweb Developer Day Hackathon: SolarList won!

June 7, 2013

We took the grand prize at the NYC BigApps Cleanweb Hackathon! Special thanks to Kai Pham, Vulken Unsal and Dan Echlin for helping out on the day and to Blake and the Cleanweb Team for making it happen.

SolarList receives Made in NY mark of distinction!

June 7, 2013

SolarList officially received our Made in NY mark of distinction today!

From the We Are Made in NY website… New York City is home to the most innovative creators in the world. The “Made in NY” initiative and logo represents New York City’s efforts to support these creators in the fields of film and television production, the digital and startup industry, and theatrical production. It also serves to celebrate NYC’s evolving media, entertainment and technology industries via the marketing efforts, educational and workforce development programs.

Send Feedback or Questions

Almost done!

Check your inbox for a verification email from CollabFinder. Click the verification link in that email and your question will be posted.

Albert Pulido

This is a great, market-driven and earth-driven idea. Sounds like the Gigwalk app but for good. Beyond the content training for the youth, it looks like the main skills students need are in sales and customer service. For these, especially sales, it would be great to incorporate some online trainings.

Albert Pulido
BigApps Advisor
Opportunities for a Better Tomorrow


Follow This Project

Get Email Updates

Almost done, please check your email!

Tweet Project