Solar panels might seem like high technology, but there's evidence to suggest that people of all ages are getting involved in making their own green energy. According to the Society of Certified Senior Advisors, 64% of seniors have a positive view of solar energy and would like their own supply. This raises the question: Why are solar panels of such benefit to senior citizens?
The senior citizen age is one of the most likely to require complex care assistance. According to CNBC, the number of care workers required to care for seniors will increase to 4 million by 2026, demonstrating the scale of the requirements. Solar panels can provide a key part of this by providing independence to seniors, whether they are aging in place at home, or in nursing homes or assisted living facilities. Currently, power surges and outages can be a cause for medical emergency if critical equipment is powered down. Furthermore, the chaos and confusion created by power loss can be harmful to relatives diagnosed with mobility issues or Alzheimer's. Having an independent supply of power creates a safety net for seniors.
As a nation, the USA has unusually high rates of poverty in senior citizens. A huge segment of this is power bills, which already eat up a large part of the household budget and, when coupled with more time spent indoors, can become out of control. Solar energy not only provides the apparatus to relinquish energy bills entirely, but it can also provide extra money in the pocket through selling energy back to the grid. This initially creates credit with the power company can then be cashed in during darker months, and many utilities will pay out unused credit in a check at the end of the year.
Leaving a Legacy
According to Money.com, solar panels immediately boost home value by up to 4.1%. For seniors who own their home in full equity, this is an instant opportunity, either for an equity loan or for passing on their legacy. This is a primary concern of seniors, according to the HuffPo's Legacy Project. Having solar energy indelibly tied to the home will help to create a house that retains its value long after the panels have paid themselves off.
Solar energy is not the reserve of the young or technologically minded. Cheaper than ever, and relatively simple, it instead is there for all age brackets. Seniors, more than others, could well stand to benefit over and above their friends and relatives in other age groups.
Sally Keys is a professional freelance writer with many years of experience across many different areas. She made the move to freelancing from a stressful corporate job and loves the work-life balance it offers her. When not at work, Sally enjoys reading, hiking, spending time with her family, and traveling as much as possible.