The upgrade bonanza: NSW PV Retailers start targeting Solar Bonus Scheme customers for system upgrades

All solar bonus scheme households within the best Sydney postcode to target for system upgrades have been individually identified and mapped, with more top postccodes to follow and most available upon request. 150,000 opportunities totalling up to 420MW of PV and 1000MWh of storage,

It won't come as much news that NSW PV retailers are eagerly awaiting a mini-boom come 1/1/2017. That's the date when 150,000 customers under the Solar Bonus Scheme lose their 60c/kWh gross feed-in tariff, and instead receive 10 times less value for their excess solar power. The first, most sensible option for these customers is to switch their metering across from gross metering to net metering, so that the solar power they self-consume during the day at least offsets their daytime tariff of 20-52c/kWh. But these households, most of whom have been receiving a cheque from their electricity providers are in for the worst bill shock they've ever experienced. And while they couldn't upgrade their PV system without forfeiting their generous 60c/kWh feed-in tariff, when the SBS program ends on 1/1/2017 they will also be unshackled from upgrading.
 
As an example, lets take postcode 2170. As this chart shows, when the SBS closed on July 2011 they had 1895 installations totalling 3.6MW, with average system size reaching 2kW by the installation cut-of date. Since then, installations have continued, albeit at a lower pace. (numbers on chart are running-average system size)
 
This situation is already generating excitement and pre-sales. Most of the 150,000 strong SBS fleet was 1.5kW-3kW, a far cry smaller than the typical 5-6kW residential installation these days, which presents a massive opportunity for system upgrades to combat the inevitable bill shock. If every NSW SBS customer upgraded to a 5kW system this would represent 420MW worth of installations, over three years worth of installations at today's rate in NSW (120MW/year). 
(numbers on chart are running-average system size)
 
Battery retrofits are also highly likely - Enphase reporting a large chunk of their battery forward orders coming from NSW SBS customers. If every SBS customer bought storage it would be equivalent to a 1000MWh market opportunity.
 
This is clearly a massive opportunity. The challenge for the PV retailers is there will be a single tsunami of activity unleashed, a temporary bonanza that PV retailers must take advantage of. The question is: how does that PV retailer reach the customers before everyone else does. Clearly the most efficient use of a sales and marketing budget would be to contact individual households known to be coming off the SBS. Those that have survived from pre-2011 will be in an enviable position of having a database of past customers that they can revisit. But most solar businesses won't be in that position, and they will need to adopt an alternative. As the maps below show, blanket advertising will have a poor return, with less than 10% of NSW households owning a SBS system.
Fortunately, we now have an solution, and SunWiz is pleased to be able to offer the addresses (only) of houses with installations that pre-date the SBS cutoff. Interested parties should contact warwick@sunwiz.com.au.
If you run a PV maintenance or panel cleaning business, we can also help you target every solar household in a given area across the nation, regardless of SBS eligibility.
(Chart shows penetration of PV households at SBS cutoff date.)