Solar Power Now

A Gables Couple Opens Their Home

By J.P. Faber

November 2019

Nationwide, some 800 homes opened their doors to the public on National Solar Tour day in October, including a dozen in Miami-Dade County. In Coral Gables, Daniel Martinez and Sandra Miller (above) on Hardee Road joined in. With snacks, drinks and blueprints waiting, the sun-happy couple shared insights with several dozen visitors. Their motivation to install a $31,000 solar system (albeit with a 30 percent tax credit) was not just to eliminate the electric bill, said Martinez.

“I want to have power when a hurricane hits,” he said. “We had a generator for Irma, and it didn’t work.” Coral Gables is a solar-friendly city, the couple noted, and permitting can take less than two months – except if you run afoul of the Board of Architects. For Martinez and Miller, it took five months and several hearings because their south-facing solar panels were visible from the street. In the end they compromised, putting some there and others in back.