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SGIP Incentive and sale of home

I qualified and had 3 Powerwall's installed under the SGIP Equity Resilience Well criteria. I have received full reimbursement from the SGIP program. The system is still within the 5 year window and is required to charge/discharge 52 times per year.

I assume I would need to disclose to the buyer that they would need to operate the system to comply with the requirement. Does anyone know if there is anything else special that needs to be done for the sale of the home that is attached to the SGIP Powerwall's?
 
I have no clue how the SGIP program works but ...

Would not the new owners have to qualify for all of the conditions you did for the program, and not just the operating portion?
Buying this house as a primary residence would meet all the requirements. I do not believe that is required. I say that because you can also qualify for a system with a medical baseline/PSPS area and I cannot imagine they would tell someone they can only sell their home to someone else qualified for medical baseline.
 
Tesla's website says (or used to say) that they would monitor Powerwall cycles and, if it appears that you are going to fall short of the SGIP cycle requirements, they would start cycling the Powerwalls to make sure the target is met.
That is cool. They must just dump it to the grid which is strange because that is not allowed at least for me. 40 kwh is not much each week. Could just set the heat pump and forced it to burn some kilowatts.
 
That is cool. They must just dump it to the grid which is strange because that is not allowed at least for me. 40 kwh is not much each week. Could just set the heat pump and forced it to burn some kilowatts.
I haven't had it happen but I suspect they force the home to run off the Powerwalls for a period instead of the grid, and then recharge the Powerwalls.
 
I had 3 PW installed by tesla late last year. They told me they applied for sgip on my behalf but nothing else. I am fully cycling at least once a week on cost saving mode.

The last time I called, the rep told me to file it with my tax return! I tried to explain the difference from the itc but she didn’t get it of course. Anyway, any chance a check might just show up in the mail at some point (fingers crossed) and if so how much?
 

holeydonut

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Jun 27, 2020
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East Bay NorCal
I had 3 PW installed by tesla late last year. They told me they applied for sgip on my behalf but nothing else. I am fully cycling at least once a week on cost saving mode.

The last time I called, the rep told me to file it with my tax return! I tried to explain the difference from the itc but she didn’t get it of course. Anyway, any chance a check might just show up in the mail at some point (fingers crossed) and if so how much?


The SGIP process is very complicated with numerous steps in the middle. The chance of a check randomly showing up in the mail without those steps being followed is zero.

At a bare minimum, you need an SGIP application number that SGIP has acknowledged is in the Reservation Request (RRF) phase. This means the designed/planned system qualifies for SGIP, and SGIP will acknowledge a place in line. You should consider that Tesla may not realize you wanted the large-scale-residential SGIP; and tried to put you in queue for the small-scale-residential SGIP. In the PG&E coverage area... large-scale still had a bit of funds in 2020/21. But small-scale was exhausted after 2019.

For me, SGIP initially refused to grant me RRF because PG&E refused to acknowledge that my system was "properly sized". So I had PG&E telling me 2x Powerwalls was too small and the plans would be denied PTO. And PG&E saying 3x Powerwalls was too much ESS for my house. But eventually I went straight to SGIP and got this issue resolved (zero help from PG&E because PG&E sucks).

At the time of RRF, the project will obtain a number and the funds place-held. The message the homeowner gets with a successful RRF starts out with:

"Congratulations! This notice confirms that funds have been reserved for your project PGE-SGIP-2020-XXXXX. Please note that this is stage 1 of a 2 stage application process."

If you don't have that number or a confirmed RRF, your SGIP may not even be in the queue.

As the system approaches completion, the RRF must be converted to an Incentive Claim (ICF) submission. At this time, the company installing the system will need to report to PG&E that the system is ready for inspection and provisioning. From here, SGIP will require PG&E to validate the system is what the installer claims it to be. The message the homeowner receives with a successful ICF starts out with:

Thank you for submitting the SGIP Incentive Claim Form (ICF) package for Project ID PGE-SGIP-2020-XXXXX for BayReaver.

During the ICF, there will be more steps. I had two separate surveyors come to my house to take pictures of the install and test the backup by opening my main PG&E disconnect. I believe SGIP had early problems with installers pretending to install ESS then claiming the systems for SGIP rebates. So now PG&E (the SGIP administrator in NorCal) will send folks from the likes of Energy Engineering for Utilities and Industry | AESC Inc to your home to take pictures and confirm the system is operational (not just some cardboard cutouts on the wall).

SGIP also requires proof of data storage and export from the ESS. They usually obtain this data from Tesla (or the agent authorized to access Tesla's telemetry).

Assuming smooth sailing, the ICF will be approved. From here, it's about 3 weeks before a check shows up in the mail.

Great news! We are delighted to let you know that this SGIP project has been approved for an incentive payment: Project ID: PGE-SGIP-2020-XXXXX

So yeah, if Tesla cannot provide you with an RRF number, you're likely not going to get the SGIP rebate.
 
The SGIP process is very complicated with numerous steps in the middle. The chance of a check randomly showing up in the mail without those steps being followed is zero.

At a bare minimum, you need an SGIP application number that SGIP has acknowledged is in the Reservation Request (RRF) phase. This means the designed/planned system qualifies for SGIP, and SGIP will acknowledge a place in line. You should consider that Tesla may not realize you wanted the large-scale-residential SGIP; and tried to put you in queue for the small-scale-residential SGIP. In the PG&E coverage area... large-scale still had a bit of funds in 2020/21. But small-scale was exhausted after 2019.

For me, SGIP initially refused to grant me RRF because PG&E refused to acknowledge that my system was "properly sized". So I had PG&E telling me 2x Powerwalls was too small and the plans would be denied PTO. And PG&E saying 3x Powerwalls was too much ESS for my house. But eventually I went straight to SGIP and got this issue resolved (zero help from PG&E because PG&E sucks).

At the time of RRF, the project will obtain a number and the funds place-held. The message the homeowner gets with a successful RRF starts out with:



If you don't have that number or a confirmed RRF, your SGIP may not even be in the queue.

As the system approaches completion, the RRF must be converted to an Incentive Claim (ICF) submission. At this time, the company installing the system will need to report to PG&E that the system is ready for inspection and provisioning. From here, SGIP will require PG&E to validate the system is what the installer claims it to be. The message the homeowner receives with a successful ICF starts out with:



During the ICF, there will be more steps. I had two separate surveyors come to my house to take pictures of the install and test the backup by opening my main PG&E disconnect. I believe SGIP had early problems with installers pretending to install ESS then claiming the systems for SGIP rebates. So now PG&E (the SGIP administrator in NorCal) will send folks from the likes of Energy Engineering for Utilities and Industry | AESC Inc to your home to take pictures and confirm the system is operational (not just some cardboard cutouts on the wall).

SGIP also requires proof of data storage and export from the ESS. They usually obtain this data from Tesla (or the agent authorized to access Tesla's telemetry).

Assuming smooth sailing, the ICF will be approved. From here, it's about 3 weeks before a check shows up in the mail.



So yeah, if Tesla cannot provide you with an RRF number, you're likely not going to get the SGIP rebate.

Thanks for all the info. Do you or anyone else know how long certain steps are? I'm in "ICF Technical Review" for 2+ months.

I'd have to say SGIP is one of the most painful experiences to go through with lack of assistance, lack of communication, no notice of time frames, etc. You have little clue/idea if you will get the check. There is also no one to call and emails are not responded to at all.

I would love if it was just some straight tax thing on your taxes and you take care of it yourself, but SGIP is very very painful to work through.

This is why for NEM3.0, if we have to depend on this for rebates/credits, it's a non-starter I think with how poorly the process is. It's true people abused this earlier, but the whole idea of not knowing if you'll even get a check makes it not a good system.

I went in expecting the worst and hoping it works out, but still not sure if it'll work out.
 
The SGIP process is very complicated with numerous steps in the middle. The chance of a check randomly showing up in the mail without those steps being followed is zero.

At a bare minimum, you need an SGIP application number that SGIP has acknowledged is in the Reservation Request (RRF) phase. This means the designed/planned system qualifies for SGIP, and SGIP will acknowledge a place in line. You should consider that Tesla may not realize you wanted the large-scale-residential SGIP; and tried to put you in queue for the small-scale-residential SGIP. In the PG&E coverage area... large-scale still had a bit of funds in 2020/21. But small-scale was exhausted after 2019.

For me, SGIP initially refused to grant me RRF because PG&E refused to acknowledge that my system was "properly sized". So I had PG&E telling me 2x Powerwalls was too small and the plans would be denied PTO. And PG&E saying 3x Powerwalls was too much ESS for my house. But eventually I went straight to SGIP and got this issue resolved (zero help from PG&E because PG&E sucks).

At the time of RRF, the project will obtain a number and the funds place-held. The message the homeowner gets with a successful RRF starts out with:



If you don't have that number or a confirmed RRF, your SGIP may not even be in the queue.

As the system approaches completion, the RRF must be converted to an Incentive Claim (ICF) submission. At this time, the company installing the system will need to report to PG&E that the system is ready for inspection and provisioning. From here, SGIP will require PG&E to validate the system is what the installer claims it to be. The message the homeowner receives with a successful ICF starts out with:



During the ICF, there will be more steps. I had two separate surveyors come to my house to take pictures of the install and test the backup by opening my main PG&E disconnect. I believe SGIP had early problems with installers pretending to install ESS then claiming the systems for SGIP rebates. So now PG&E (the SGIP administrator in NorCal) will send folks from the likes of Energy Engineering for Utilities and Industry | AESC Inc to your home to take pictures and confirm the system is operational (not just some cardboard cutouts on the wall).

SGIP also requires proof of data storage and export from the ESS. They usually obtain this data from Tesla (or the agent authorized to access Tesla's telemetry).

Assuming smooth sailing, the ICF will be approved. From here, it's about 3 weeks before a check shows up in the mail.



So yeah, if Tesla cannot provide you with an RRF number, you're likely not going to get the SGIP rebate.

Would the sgip application number be buried somewhere in the PTO application? The phone rep it telling me to look there at this point but she doesn’t seem to know much.
 

holeydonut

Active Member
Supporting Member
Jun 27, 2020
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East Bay NorCal
Would the sgip application number be buried somewhere in the PTO application? The phone rep it telling me to look there at this point but she doesn’t seem to know much.


No, the SGIP forms are 100% different than the PTO forms. The website a specialist would need to file PTO is different than the website they would need to process an SGIP. The SGIP uses a "developer key" to identify the installer, while PTO uses a different identifier.

Also, the "size" of your system is different on the PTO form vs SGIP. For my 3x Powerwall system, my NEM2-MT PTO size is 22 kW (7 kW AC of solar + 15 kW of export potential from the batteries). But the SGIP size is only 15 kW since SGIP doesn't care about solar.

The large-scale SGIP incentive is calculated based on the "hours of backup". So 3x Powerwalls is 39.6 kWh of potential energy that can discharge at 15 kW. This is 2.64 hours of backup. The first 2 hours of backup have a different incentive than the next 0.64 hours. The small-scale SGIP uses a completely different math and a completely different SGIP RRF/ICF process. And the equity/resiliency backups for people in fire-prone areas uses an even different methodology. @Zabe or @h2ofun can speak to how much $ they got from their SGIPS on their systems under those programs.

That's why I think if Tesla messed up small vs large vs resiliency, you're going to have to go back to square one.
 
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holeydonut

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East Bay NorCal
Also, how the heck do I contact sgip once I have this application number (assuming I can get it)? I don’t see a way to do that.


Back when an individual homeowner could get their own SGIP (under their own developer key), SGIP used to have an email address that lowly newb homeowners could ping. But that was back before 2019.

By 2020, they basically barred individuals from applying for SGIP. And they removed that inbox and stopped responding to individual homeowners.

I had to attend one of their quarterly webinars and speak with the SGIP reps directly. Luckily, the Sunrun regional interconnection director was on the SGIP webinar as well. Eventually SGIP+Sunrun realized I wasn't your normal homeowner who would just sit back and wait for nothing to happen.

They got super annoyed at me, but it became abundantly clear that my concerns were directly the result of someone at PG&E taking an active role trying to stop my system with no justifiable cause/motive. Sunrun was surprised at how BS PG&E was acting, and I even got the Sunrun SVP of California policy involved.

Eventually, SGIP put me in touch with someone who helped me to unblock the issue and help me to proceed. PG&E also eventually approved Sunrun's design when they took the plan-approver assigned to my case away and assigned someone else.

Here's their page with upcoming SGIP webinars; next one should be in early June.
 

holeydonut

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Jun 27, 2020
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East Bay NorCal
Good to know. I’m still on hold with Tesla but this is sounding like more than I’m willing to do in terms of time/effort, and I’m quite patient and could really use the money too!


Yeah Solar + ESS is the pits once PG&E is involved. My career involves managing complex projects to completion. I've never faced this level of absolute sh!t in my life. If I was being professionally evaluated on how my solar+ESS project went, I'd have fired myself for being inept.

PG&E sucks so hard. The amount of people-power they spent trying to stop my system is absurd. But they'll gladly pass those costs to ratepayers; too bad homeowners don't have anyone to pass the buck to. We could all use the money lol.

Anyway, to Zabe's original point, the money is the homeowner's once its paid out. The homeowner who "buys" the system assumes the liability if they do not charge/discharge the required cycles. So yeah, this requirement probably should be on the initial disclosures of the home sale listing. Presumably, the Tesla account that accesses those Powerwalls would need to be transferred over to the new buyer as well (or Tesla somehow provisions the ESS to the buyers' own Tesla account). I'm not really sure how that hand-off works for Powerwalls.
 

jjrandorin

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Nov 28, 2018
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Riverside Co. CA
Would the sgip application number be buried somewhere in the PTO application? The phone rep it telling me to look there at this point but she doesn’t seem to know much.

As far as I know, tesla does not do large scale SGIP and has not for quite some time (unless its equity and resiliency). Tesla didnt offer large scale SGIP in 2020 when I got my 2 powerwalls. They didnt offer SGIP at all, really, again unless its equity and resiliency which people use with the same name, but its really a different program at least to me.
 
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holeydonut

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Jun 27, 2020
3,604
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East Bay NorCal
Thanks for all the info. Do you or anyone else know how long certain steps are? I'm in "ICF Technical Review" for 2+ months.

I'd have to say SGIP is one of the most painful experiences to go through with lack of assistance, lack of communication, no notice of time frames, etc. You have little clue/idea if you will get the check. There is also no one to call and emails are not responded to at all.

I would love if it was just some straight tax thing on your taxes and you take care of it yourself, but SGIP is very very painful to work through.

This is why for NEM3.0, if we have to depend on this for rebates/credits, it's a non-starter I think with how poorly the process is. It's true people abused this earlier, but the whole idea of not knowing if you'll even get a check makes it not a good system.

I went in expecting the worst and hoping it works out, but still not sure if it'll work out.


ICF for me took over 2 months. During that time, SGIP asked for "discharge data" and nobody at Sunrun knew where to find it. Interestingly, while Sunrun has successfully processed countless SGIP for other customers, mine was the first time a boat load of very specific discharge data was requested. During the ICF, it also took a while to get the independent surveyor and PG&E blue-truck-QEW out to my house for their photos and inspections.

I agree with you SGIP is the weirdest incentive program I've ever encountered that deals with lowly newb consumer/homeowner purchases. Administrating it must create hundreds of extra jobs and red tape.

I wish you the best of luck; if you have the application number, it's worth trying to ping the PG&E SGIP admins and ask what's the next step.
[email protected] or
[email protected]

SGIP is itself a cost shift too... shifting a billion bucks from people and companies without ESS to ones who now have ESS heh.
 
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