Risks and Rewards of Investing in Solar

The Risks and Rewards of Investing in Solar Power- Essential knowledge to take to the boardroom


Reliance on the British weather - solar power is weather dependent and spells of bad weather can reduce overall yield. All GMI Energy forecasts are based on meteorological data and our installed systems are monitored in real-time. Data from the last two years shows the majority of our systems are performing in line or above original forecasts, despite recent dismal weather. This supports findings from the University of Sheffield that showed 92% of 2000 UK systems monitored in 2012 were performing ‘on spec’ after two years.

Failures in the products and technology - any system failures would not only result in costly repairs but also in a loss of potential earnings from system downtime. GMI Energy minimise this risk through continual system monitoring and automated email alert systems. We only use the highest industry standard products with lengthy warranties.

A low-performance system - designing a solar PV system requires skill and attention to detail because no two sites are alike. Our designs are based on detailed surveys of your land and building structure, taking into account location, irradiance, shading, angle and orientation to ensure the maximum possible yield.

Invalid warranties - the global solar PV market is volatile so it is essential to choose a reliable manufacturer who will still be around in 10 years to honour their warranties. GMI Energy is a financially sound company. We only work alongside suppliers with a long-established reputation in the solar industry and who will be able to deliver on their promises.

Changes in Feed in Tariffs - the rate you receive on your Feed in Tariff is fixed and RPI linked. There is a very small risk that if RPI wre reduced then your Feed in Tariff rate would be reduced. Historically RPI has increased by around 4.8% annually over the last 25 years.

Changes in ROCs - if you choose to receive payment via the ROCs scheme then there is a risk that the value of your ROCs will vary. However, historic auction prices for ROCs show there is usually only a small variance between the lowest and highest prices. You can reduce this risk by setting a reserve price at auction or agreeing a fixed price in a Power Purchase Agreement. The Renewables Obligation also ensures there is demand for ROCs


Benefit from an infinite and free energy source - reduce the risk of being affected by energy price rises that are set to double in the next 7 years. Purchasing solar is effectively like fixing your energy rates for the next 20 years.

A reliable system - benefit from a system that is comprised of high quality products and designed to last for the next 25+ years. Our Operations and Maintenance Total Care Package ensures your system is carefully monitored and maintained to continually perform to its maximum.

A full turnkey solution - having over 27 years of experience in the construction industry you can trust us to take care of every step of your project, from initial designs and planning to installation and lifetime system maintenance.

Long lasting - use of the highest quality products guarantee the greatest savings and revenue for your business. Our systems are protected by lengthy warranties covering the panels, inverters and installation, as well as the cost of repairs and labour when you take out our Total Care Package.

The highest performance - careful design and use of quality components ensures our systems perform above and beyond expectations. Our panels are suited to the UK climate and offer the best performance levels on the market. A power warranty guarantees 6.7% more power output than the industry standard of 90% for 10 years and 25 year performance warranty guarantees that the panels will still be producing at 80% of their initial output in year 25.

Guaranteed payment for your electricity - Feed in Tariffs offer a generous income from your system that is fixed at a rate for the next 20 years. This makes it easier to forecast the anticipated earnings from your system over the next 20-25 years.

Sell your electricity - If you opt for a variable ROCs payment then there is a greater risk but potential to earn more. For example, at a Feed in Tariff rate of 6.8p / kWh you would receive £68 / MWh. Under the current ROCs rate for ground-mount solar and based on the average ROC value for 2011-2012 you would receive £71 / MWh. Increasingly stringent targets under the Renewables Obligation ensures there is a demand for ROCs.