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Common Sense Energy is local solar

PLAINVIEW, MINNESOTA—There’s no two ways about it‑Common Sense Energy ‑takes the long view about the cost savings property owners gain when they choose to invest in local solar!

Common Sense Energy has been providing an alternative to ground-mounted solar gardens since 2014.  This solar start-up company located in Plainview, MN, has chosen to focus on designing and installing roof-top solar and small, ground-mounted systems as well as energy efficiency planning.  These systems produce power primarily for the on-site use of homes, small businesses or the farms on which the solar array is located. In other words, Common Sense Energy specializes in self-sustaining solar energy systems that let consumers increase their energy self-reliance.

Cost savings can be attributed to the difference between the cost of energy produced by solar gardens that sell energy back to the grid  vs. local solar that has higher up-front costs but significant savings over the 30 or 40 year lifespan of the system.

“When you calculate savings over the long term, local solar is the winner,” said Dean Harrington, Common Sense Energy’s CEO.  He added that local solar provides an independent and secure supply of electricity while meeting concerns for environmental responsibility.

Since its start-up, Common Sense Energy has provided plans for Madeline Island’s local solar project.  It has also installed roof-top systems in Winona, Oak Center, Zumbro falls, Faribault, Plainview and Willmar areas.

Believing in that the best return on energy investment comes from integrating energy efficiency with renewable energy, Common Sense Energy offers energy efficiency assessment and planning services to help customers reduce their electricity usage before planning a solar array.

For the current construction season, Common Sense will be installing eight to twelve new projects. One is currently in construction in the Oronoco area, and the others will be in the Plainview surrounding areas.

Long term plans also include efforts to engage local municipalities and business owners in incrementally-installed local solar projects that provide all the electrical energy needed for local use while selling the excess voltage to utility companies.

“We believe that local solar increases the value of property while reducing overall energy costs,” Harrington said.  “It’s a win/win once the initial investment is made.”

Common Sense Energy’s commitment to local solar includes site assessment, system design, installation, energy efficiency planning, and financing assistance.  For more information, go to or call 507-710-4120.

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