Sekisui to debut homes that make excess solar power

JIJI

Sekisui Chemical Co. says it will launch a new kind of custom-built single-family house with a large-capacity solar power generation system.

The Smart Power Station house, available starting next Saturday, can generate excess electricity to sell to utilities, allowing customers to pay no utility costs and earn money from electricity sales, company officials said.

The company hopes the home will spur demand at a time when the housing industry is concerned about a possible downturn due to the planned increase in the 5 percent consumption tax to 8 percent next April.

The new home features integrated roofs and solar panels and extended eaves, allowing a standard house with a total floor space of about 100 sq. meters to generate more than 10 kw, twice the amount of previous models.

Buyers of the new house can earn a total of about ¥4.8 million over 20 years from selling excess electricity, Sekisui Chemical says. For this fiscal year, utilities are required to buy electricity generated from solar power at houses and other facilities for ¥37.8 per kilowatt-hour. The new home will start at some ¥660,000 per 3.3 sq. meters, almost unchanged from earlier models.