POWERHOME Solar is the No. 1 residential rooftop installer of solar energy in Michigan, and we were named the state’s Emerging Business of the Year by the Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council in 2018, so we enjoy talk of superlatives around here. As such, we thought it’d be fun to catch up with Dana Rosenthal, our very first customer in the Wolverine State who fittingly lives in Wolverine Lake.
Michigan’s Customer No. 1 Is Used to Being the First
He and his wife Wendi are both entrepreneurs, with Dana working as an architect and his wife running her own business that sells goods online and also from her own storefront. Given they work for themselves, it’s unsurprising to see they saw value in claiming some energy independence with solar panels.
“I didn’t realize I was Patient No. 1,” says Mr. Rosenthal, whose project was installed in late June 2017.
Dana has some experience being No. 1 or doing something before others. He guided three Michigan midget hockey teams to state championships in the mid-to-late 1990s, and he even started Virginia Tech’s hockey program as a student. As for his architectural practice, he calls himself a “one-man wrecking crew” because he rarely hands off any parts of his projects. He was even the first in his neighborhood to go solar, and he sold one of his neighbors on working with POWERHOME Solar after that family saw the value for themselves.
Mr. Rosenthal himself was sold on solar during his in-home consultation with POWERHOME’s current vice president of sales, Brandon Goodnight. Rosenthal saw how the math works and how he would end up benefitting. With Michigan having among the highest rates of power in the nation, going solar is a way to significantly reduce that electric bill.
“I got a good feeling,” Dana says. “We got a good vibe from him, good information, we had good dialogue for a good couple of hours at my kitchen table. It seemed like it would be a good fit.”
Saving with Solar to Help Save the Environment
But for Mr. Rosenthal, solar isn’t simply just a way to save money on electric bills. He’s dedicated to being green and sharing that message to others in all ways he can. He’s agreed to serve as a reference for POWERHOME for those interested in wondering how solar truly works for our customers.
“I go over it in simple terms,” Dana says of his conversations with potential customers. “I try not to talk down or talk up to people. I tell them how it works and how it will affect their bottom line. In terms of financial, if you’re going to pay the same amount every month for the installation, but your electric bills are going to keep going up, 10 percent, 20 percent a year, you can lock that price in and see a reduction in your overall expense over time and be on the plus side.”
Dana does feel the need to do his part from an environmental perspective. He and his wife recently bought an electric Mini Cooper. His wife has used it to drive to her nearby office, and through the first two weeks of ownership of the car, she’s yet to use any gas.
“I think that becomes part of a lifestyle for anybody who’s involved with solar, passive solar, geothermal,” Mr. Rosenthal says. “Anything that’s going to help some of the expenses and some of the manufacturing of energy through fossil fuels.”
Energy Independence and Reduced Electric Bills
While solar was a slam dunk for Dana, it wasn’t immediately so for his wife. It took her about 6-8 months after installation for her to see the math and the bills for herself, but she’s had that opportunity now.
“She thought I was a little bit crazy, and I might be, but in the long run, she’s actually finally getting everything that Brandon and I sat down and talked about,” Mr. Rosenthal says.
So in being energy efficient at his home, in his work, and in his advocacy for others, Dana is another of POWERHOME’s unique customers. With as many ideas as he has to further green the world, he’s hoping there’s a way where he could work for POWERHOME in the future.
“That’s the end goal, to clean this place up,” Mr. Rosenthal says of fossil-fuel energy sources.