Allume SolShare and Apartment Solar

SolShare Apartment Solar: Empowering Communities Through Collective Solar Energy

As the world shifts its focus towards sustainability and combating climate change, renewable energy sources like solar power have emerged as a key solution. In urban environments, where space is often limited, harnessing solar energy can be challenging. However, a transformative solution called SolShare Apartment Solar is changing the game. This article explores the innovative concept of SolShare Apartment Solar, its mechanics, benefits, and potential to reshape urban energy consumption.

The Concept of SolShare Apartment Solar

SolShare Apartment Solar introduces a novel approach to solar energy distribution in multi-unit residential buildings. Instead of relying on individual rooftop installations, SolShare harnesses the power of community by implementing a shared solar energy system that benefits all residents within a building.

At the heart of the system is a solar panel array installed on the building’s rooftop or other suitable spaces. These panels capture sunlight, converting it into direct current (DC) electricity. Advanced inverters then transform the DC electricity into alternating current (AC), which is the standard form of power used in buildings. The converted AC electricity is distributed to power common areas such as hallways, elevators, and lighting systems. Additionally, a portion of the generated solar energy is allocated to individual apartments, offsetting grid-based energy consumption and potentially reducing residents’ electricity bills.

According to John Reynolds, Chief Technology Officer at SolShare, “Our aim was to empower urban communities with a tangible and impactful way to contribute to clean energy generation. SolShare Apartment Solar does just that by seamlessly integrating renewable energy into daily living.”

Reynolds further emphasizes, “We believe in fostering a sense of shared responsibility for sustainability. Each resident becomes a stakeholder in a collective endeavor, contributing to a greener future for all.”

Each year, a typical SolShare will
  • produce 35 MWh of electricity
  • typical grid-electricity reduction of 35 – 40 %
  • reduce CO2 emissions by 28 tonnes

Advantages Beyond Energy Generation

SolShare Apartment Solar offers an array of advantages that extend beyond conventional energy distribution methods:

1. **Cost Savings:** Residents can experience significant reductions in their electricity bills, leading to increased savings over time.

2. **Environmental Impact:** By decreasing carbon emissions, SolShare contributes to a greener and more sustainable living environment.

3. **Community Engagement:** The shared solar model fosters a sense of unity among residents, as they collectively contribute to clean energy generation.

4. **Grid Resilience:** The integration of energy storage solutions, such as batteries, enhances the building’s ability to withstand power outages, ensuring uninterrupted energy supply.

5. **Property Value Enhancement:** Properties equipped with SolShare Apartment Solar may experience heightened value and attractiveness in the real estate market.

Challenges and Considerations

While SolShare Apartment Solar offers a promising solution, several challenges merit attention:

1. **Initial Investment:** The installation of solar panels and related infrastructure requires an upfront investment, potentially posing a barrier for property owners or management.

2. **Regulatory Complexities:** Navigating regulatory frameworks and addressing legal considerations can present challenges during the implementation of shared solar systems.

3. **Maintenance and Monitoring:** Regular maintenance and monitoring are crucial to ensuring consistent system performance and maximizing energy generation.

4. **Equitable Distribution:** Ensuring a fair allocation of solar energy among residents requires thoughtful strategies to promote transparency and equity.

5. **Technical Limitations:** Factors like rooftop space availability, local weather conditions, and shading can impact the amount of solar energy that can be generated.

Closing Thoughts

SolShare Apartment Solar stands as a trailblazing solution that transforms the way solar energy is harnessed within urban communities. By integrating shared solar arrays, individual apartment allocations, and optional energy storage, SolShare provides an avenue for sustainable living while reducing energy costs. As technology advances and awareness deepens, SolShare has the potential to become a common feature on rooftops, ushering in a cleaner, more energy-resilient future for urban living. Through innovative approaches like SolShare, communities can collectively pave the way toward a brighter, greener tomorrow.

Interested? Have a look at some case studies or learn more at the Allume energy website.

Allume SolShare Apartment Solar
Allume SolShare Apartment Solar Case Study Example

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Ovida Community Energy Hub | Victorian Solar Grant

A generous grant for the $2m Melbourne based Ovida Community Energy Hub was announced by the Victorian state government this week. It’s been given a grant to help deliver affordable, dispatchable and reliable energy for occupants of apartment and commercial buildings.

Ovida Community Energy Hub

Ovida Community Energy Hub installers Jemena (source:
Ovida Community Energy Hub installers Jemena

The Ovida Community Energy Hub has been awarded a $980m grant from the Victorian government to install shared solar and battery storage systems in three as yet unchosen multi-tenanted buildings. 

It’ll be done in conjunction with a group of solar companies – the consortium behind the $2 million Ovida project includes Ovida themselves, shared/community solar company Allume Energy, distribution company Jemena, RMIT and the Moreland Energy Foundation.

“Microgrid projects are part of our plan to drive down energy prices, reduce emissions and create a pipeline of investment in renewable energy,” Victorian energy minister Lily D”Ambrosio said in a statement reported by One Step Off The Grid

“This initiative will allow more households and businesses in multi-tenanted buildings to take control of their energy bills.”

The project will generate 5000kWh of renewable energy and will also support 11,000kWh of energy storage when it’s complete 

“Traditionally solar arrangements in multi-tenanted apartment blocks have been all or nothing – meaning all residents had to invest in and use the system for it to work,” said Ovida’s Paul Adams while discussing the project. 

“We know this can be a challenge because apartment blocks often include long-term residents, owners, and short-term occupants who each have different energy needs and expectations.

Along with apartment solar, this is another great step for commercial solar in Australia – watching the government get involved like this bodes well for the future of these sorts of projects. As the price of electricity continues to rise more and more businesses will be looking to insure themselves against further rises and look at buying their energy from alternative sources.



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Solar Power for Rental Properties

Solar power for rental properties may start becoming more common as the cost of installs decreases and councils/community groups work on ideas such as giving landlords interest-free loans to install solar on their rental properties. With over 30% of Australia’s population currently renting, we need to figure out a way to make it viable for landlords and renters alike to benefit from renewable energy.

Solar power for rental properties

According to the ABC, 1.8 million Australian homes have PV solar installed on their roof – with a record amount being installed last year. This increase is due to two main factors – rapidly increasing electricity costs and decreasing cost of the actual solar technology.

According to Andrew Reddaway from the Alternative Technology Association, Australia could save 5.6 million tonnes of greenhouse gas if we work on increasing solar panel uptake for rental properties. 

“It’s a bit of a risk of the country dividing into the solar energy haves and have-nots,” Mr Reddaway said. 

Whilst not exactly a ‘two speed economy’, the increasing number of renters mean that we need to have a look at finding ways to get solar installed on these houses. There are obvious ramifications for having a situation where it’s not feasible for landlords to install solar power on properties they own – unfortunately magnanimity / environmental concern aren’t powerful enough drivers for owners to shell out $10,000 for a system. What sort of system would be fair, keeping in mind having solar power on the roof will also increase the value of the property. 

“It’ll be the tenant who sees the benefit on the electricity bill, whereas the person who pays for the solar system is generally the landlord. So the main question is: What’s in it for the landlord?” Mr Reddaway continued. 

Z-Net Uralla, a community group in regional NSW, have teamed up with the NFP CORENA (Citizens Own Renewable Energy Network Australia) to give landlords interest-free loans to install solar on their rental properties. CORENA work with both parties to discuss a fair increase in rent to help loan repayments.

“We are hoping that the partnership can be a model for communities elsewhere to copy,” Margaret Hender of CORENA said.

Solar power for rental properties - Margaret Hender CORENA
Solar power for rental properties via no-interest loans – Margaret Hender of CORENA (source:

The energy inequality currently being inexperienced has led to a few different attempts at trying to bridge the gap. CORENA have their interest free loans, and there are options for renters to install their own portable solar for apartment buildings, as we investigated last year. 

The city of Darebin has been offering interest free solar loans for residents,with repayments added to household rates. 

Are you a renter or a landlord and have any experience with solar power? Let us know in the comments. 

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Solar Power for Renters / Apartment Owners

An article on the ABC website has highlighted some of the problems with solar for millions of renters and apartment owners – they aren’t able to take advantage of solar by because they don’t own a roof to put solar on. What is the solution to offer solar power for renters?

Solar Power for Renters / Apartment Owners

With home ownership rates sinking rapidly as the prices rise, more and more renters are in the market and it’s becoming increasingly likely that the country may move to a more renter heavy population. In countries like Germany with similar high rental populations there are strong laws for renters with regards to their rights, price rises and much more. Will we see a similar change in Australia? If so, we will see a lot more people renting the same place for long periods of time. What kind of incentives can be offered so they’re able to take advantage of solar power as well? It’ll be interesting to see how this goes in the future, how stratas deal with owners wanting to install solar, and what the ramifications for residential solar in Australia are.

Solar Power For Renters and Apartments
Solar power for renters and apartment owners – what’s the future? (source:

Solazone have several options for renters who want to make usage of the myriad benefits solar energy can offer:

  • They have solar panels that can be installed on removable frames which will not have any affect on the roof – so if you decide to leave the property you can take them with you.
  • These can be connected to battery back up systems.

Before you start thinking about removable solar panels, if you’re a long term tenant (or planning to be), consider:

  • Is it worth opening a dialogue with the homeowner with regards to installing a conventional PV solar system on the roof, where the owner would benefit from a) the solar rebate and b) the added value to the property?
  • Is there an area in the backyard where a ground-mounted solar system could be installed?

Please note that even if you are thinking about installing removable solar on the roof or a removable ground-mounted solar system in the backyard you’ll still need to run these ideas by your property manager or the homeowner.

Solar Panels for Apartment Balcony

Low Tech magazine have an article about ‘how to get your apartment off the grid‘ which as a lot of useful information about installing solar in an apartment building.

Although the roof is generally off limits, there are some clever ways you can utilise windows and balconies to generate power. If you can adjust the tilt of your solar panels that will allow you to gather more energy as well.

If you’re interested in learning more about hte specifics, please see a two-part video below about an apartment balcony solar power setup by Ibodini2008 on YouTube – it’s really interesting!

Have you had any luck installing solar in your unit or apartment? Please let us know in the comments. We’d love to hear about it.

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