SolarCity to offer Airbnb members up to $1,000 cash back on solar systems

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SolarCity and Airbnb are teaming up to provide Airbnb members a discount when it comes to installing solar power generation systems on their own homes. Airbnb community members (including hosts and guests), will now be eligible to receive as much as $1,000 in cash back rebates on solar system installations, in all markets where SolarCity currently operates

SolarCity customers also get Airbnb benefits, in the form of a $100 travel credit for future bookings, and that applies to both existing SolarCity customers as well as new ones who sign up in the future. On a press call discussing the arrangement, Airbnb’s Head of Global Policy Chris Lehane explained that the team-up makes a lot of sense because both companies find that their customers place a high value on lowering their environmental footprint, and Airbnb customers in particular are looking for places to stay that take ecological concerns to heart.

“We are indeed that climate friendly travel option that we believe guests are looking for,” he said.

Airbnb already does a lot to offset the environmental impact of travel, Lehane said, noting that in the U.S. it has reduced water consumption by 4.2 billion litres vs. traditional accommodation options, and greenhouse gas reduction amounts to around as much as is generated by 560,000 cars on U.S. roads per year.

“The great majority of our customers go solar with absolutely no money out of pocket,” explained SolarCity President of Global Sales Toby Corey, explaining that the company looks for programs and partnerships that allow it to mitigate costs for potential customers. Since most of SolarCity’s customers opt for the zero money down financing plan for installations, the $1,000 credit will be applied to their payback, reducing the overall repayment period, Corey explained.

SolarCity operates in 19 states currently, which means Airbnb members in any of those U.S. markets can take advantage of the program. Corey also noted that SolarCity has almost 300,000 customers. He added that the Airbnb tie-up will help the company address the “millennial” market segment, which is one that he said it has only begun to explore, and one that represents a huge potential opportunity for the solar power company.

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