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FAQs: Solar Victoria Portal

There have been a number of questions from members of the public about the Solar Homes Package, how the rebates work and the impact for individuals, installers and retailers.

For the Householder

  • The portal is a one-stop shop for solar customers and solar professionals. It allows solar customers to apply for eligibility for a Solar Homes rebate and for solar professionals to manage their customers’ rebate claims. Once you’ve received a quote from a retailer and they’ve uploaded it to the portal, you can use the details of that quote to apply for eligibility.

  • Yes, you can get quotes from different retailers. However, once you start applying for eligibility you must select the quote for the installation you intend to get. If you want to change your installation after you’ve received your eligibility number, you’ll need to contact our customer service team on 1300 376 393. 

  • A list of authorised retailers, updated regularly, is available on our website.

  • All installers participating in the Solar Homes program must have CEC accreditation. All retailers must be CEC Approved Solar Retailers, which they can obtain by becoming signatories to the CEC's Retailer Code of Conduct.

  • When retailers/installers/providers register with Solar Victoria they must provide their CEC accreditation to be approved.

  • The retailer can only see information that you provide them, including the address the installation will take place at and the name and email you give them.

  • If you have not yet applied for eligibility, you can obtain a quote from another retailer and then apply for eligibility using this quote. If you have already applied for eligibility and received an eligibility number, please contact Solar Victoria on 1300 376 393 . 

  • An eligibility number is the unique number given to you once your eligibility for a rebate has been confirmed. You will use this number when engaging with Solar Victoria. Your eligibility number will also be synced to the QR Code provided for scanning by your installer.

  • The QR Code is a digital barcode that must will be scanned by your installer to verify the details of installation including name, address and eligibility for the rebate.

  • To be eligible for a rebate all applicants must first confirm their eligibility by meeting the eligibility criteria. Once you are confirmed to be eligible for a rebate you will be provided a unique eligibility number that will linked to a QR Code which must be scanned by your installer on the day of installation. Your chosen retailer will be notified by the portal once you have successfully completed your eligibility. 

For the Installer/Retailer

  • If you haven’t received an invitation to register on the portal as either a retailer or installer and would like to you can call Solar Victoria on 1300 376 393 or email installers@team.solar.vic.gov.au and we will arrange to have an invitation sent to you.

  • Applicants will be able to call Solar Victoria on 1300 376 393 and talk to a Customer Service Officer (CSO) to establish their need to make a postal application. They will be asked to obtain a quote from one or more accredited retailers and to phone back when the retailer(s) have uploaded the Solar Retailer Statement on the SVP. Then the applicant will be mailed an application form and their place will be reserved for 28 days. Then, the applicant will be mailed an application form and they will have 24 days to return it to Solar Victoria correct and complete with all required documentation.

  • The rebate will only be paid to the Approved Solar Retailer who submits the Solar Provider Statement for the installation. The Approved Solar Retailer is required to engage only CEC accredited installers and to install only CEC Approved Hardware. Failure to do either or both will render the installation ineligible under the rebate scheme. 

  • Our system requires the input of the total cost of system installation, inclusive of STC estimate.  The actual reimbursement transaction for the STC is outside of the Solar Homes Program. 

  • Small-scale technology certificates are tradable certificates which you can create and trade yourself, or assign the right to create to a registered agent in exchange for an upfront discount off the cost of your system or a cash payment.  The trading of STC’s is outside of the Solar Homes Program.

  • All installations must be performed by a CEC accredited installer who can provide evidence of a Certificate of Electrical Safety.

  • All installations must be performed by a CEC accredited installer who can provide evidence of a Certificate of Electrical Safety.  The costs of the system installation are required inputs when processing a quote for rebate eligibility.  If there is no cost of installation, the cost of hardware must be provided.

  • Payments are processed every Tuesday, but the time it takes to show up in your account depends on your banking institution.

    Some banks take a few days extra for payments to show up.

    If you don’t see a payment come through within 10 days of paperwork submission, please call our call centre so that we can trace/expedite it.

  • No interest will be paid on rebate payments. Payments will be made within 5 business days of approval of installation documentation.

  • Yes, the rebate and interest free loan amount will be bundled and processed as one payment.

  • Installers who don’t register will not be able to perform installations under the scheme that are subject to a rebate.  Installers must register to participate, and to download the Service Vic smartphone app required to scan the customer installation code onsite that authorizes the installation under the Solar Homes Scheme.

  • Registration on the portal is essential to ensure that your business is captured as an approved retailer for the Solar Homes Program.

    Registration is key for Solar Victoria to correctly register business and contact details, as well as bank account details to issue rebates.

    The portal also enables Solar Retailers to provide details of customer quotes, which Solar Victoria uses to assess the rebate amount and interest free loan amount that an applicant is eligible to receive.

    The portal streamlines the rebate process, with quality checks built into the system to minimise the risk of incomplete transactions becoming idle.

  • Yes, but any installations conducted before completion of a provider’s registration will not be eligible for a rebate.

  • Registration is a real-time digital process. If you fill in the correct details, your registration will be confirmed immediately. 

    The registration process simply requires you to enter your company information, accept the terms and conditions of participation in the program, and provide your banking details.  

    No documents are required to be uploaded for registration, however, you should take care that your payment details are entered correctly so that the rebate can be paid to the correct account. (from Industry Outreach FAQs)

  • You will receive a confirmation email from the Solar Victoria Portal (from Industry Outreach FAQs).

  • Solar Victoria requires that installers are accredited with the Clean Energy Council.

  • The Clean Energy Council maintains their list of accredited installers.

  • We encourage transactions via the portal as this will accelerate the rebate eligibility. If customers do not have access to the internet themselves or via other means (family, friends, local library) then postal applications are still accepted.  Customers can phone Solar Victoria on 1300 376 393 to initiate a postal application.

  • Eligibility numbers are unique to each customer and used to confirm their eligibility for a rebate. This number will be linked to the QR Code all installers will scan before commencing an installation.

  • QR codes will confirm the customer’s eligibility for a rebate and the details connected to their application (e.g. address, name etc.). Installers must scan the QR Code to verify the customer’s details prior to commencing any installation.

  • A single QR code authorizes the installation and associated payments.

  • The ATO stipulates that Tax invoices are required to have the following characteristics: Name & Address matches the customer, Solar Provider Name & ABN, Invoice date and GST. We will require the STC discount to be deducted and itemised list of installed products.

  • Yes, Solar Victoria is committed to ensuring that people taking part in the Solar Homes program get quality service from the state’s fast-growing solar sector. Achieving this will also instil further community confidence in the industry.

    Solar Victoria wants to ensure retailers taking part in the program are adhering to a high standard, with the customer's best interest at the centre.

    For many consumers, solar is a complex and new product. Determining whether what they are being offered is fit-for-purpose and cost competitive is challenging, which puts them at risk from unscrupulous operators. The Code of Conduct provides standards to ensure Retailers are consistent in their approach to this.

    Victoria already has a range of consumer laws to help protect people from misleading and deceptive conduct, unconscionable behaviour and contracts, as well as pressure tactics, however gaps remain.

    This mandatory requirement for solar retailers reinforces other consumer protections, which can be applied after work is done or in the event of a problem with the installation, workmanship or warranties. Requiring retailers to become signatories of the Clean Energy Council (CEC) Solar Retailer Code of Conduct ensures the industry adheres to consistent standards in relation to customer service by establishing a minimum standard and reducing consumer risk. The same requirement is currently in place for similar programs in Queensland and South Australia.

  • No. The platform has an in-progress status which allows retailers to transact if their CEC accreditation is underway.

  • The customer relationship exists with the retailer – the retailer appoints an installer to perform the installation. The scanning of the QR code at time of install links the installer to the completed installation.

  • Unfortunately, this is not a feature of the Solar Victoria Portal (from Industry Outreach FAQs).

  • Solar Victoria drives safety and quality through our approved product lists and our audit program.

    All systems installed under Solar Homes must comply with the requirements outlined in Solar Victoria’s latest Notice to Market, in addition to Australian Standards.

    Solar Victoria is also conducting regular random audits of installed systems, in partnership with ESV and VBA. This helps to ensure customers get quality systems that are safely installed.

    In addition, customers are free to spend more than the combined value of the rebate and loan to purchase a higher quality system. As is always the case, the role for retailers is to explain why customers should do this.

  • Solar Victoria will continuously monitor the delivery of the program from, including bi-monthly rebate releases.

    The bi-monthly rebate releases are designed to ensure a steady, orderly expansion of the residential solar industry, with rebate supported activity spread evenly over each year. They also reflect the annual program budget, which is fixed.

    The establishment of bi-monthly quotas has been considered carefully by Solar Victoria, responding to market conditions and feedback from industry stakeholders. It helps maximise certainty for businesses by eliminating peaks and troughs in rebates available, and prevents unexpected closures of the program.

  • If there is no connectivity, it will save the data on the device and once back in range, will send the scanned data through. If you forget, then you don’t get paid.

  • The customer must enter three points of information on the system to validate the correct quote: retailer name, quote number unique to that retailer and quote amount. It’s these three in combination which then the system pulls up the corresponding quote. This does not replace any BAU functions and the customer must still contact the retailer to formally accept the quote. Acceptance of the quote is a contractual arrangement between the customer and the retailer.

  • The customer must reapply if they wish to change retailers.

  • A customer will have requested as many quotes as they want and it is up to retailers to inform their potential customer that their quote is uploaded and ready. Once they know their retailers have uploaded their quotes they will know they are available and ready for them to start their application.

  • Payments are processed every Tuesday, but the time it takes to show up in your account depends on your banking institution.

    Some banks take a few days extra for payments to show up.

    If you don’t see a payment come through within 10 days of paperwork submission, please call our call centre so that we can trace/expedite it.

  • Retailers should continue to provide customers with quotes for the cost of the system and information of the benefit to the customer of the STC as they currently do.

    Retailers should also ensure that customers are informed of the Solar Victoria contribution and understand the out of pocket expenses should there be a gap.   

    The cost to the consumer can be calculated as follows:

    - Quote for the cost of installed system (inclusive of GST)
    Less
    - Value to the retailer of the STCs transferred to the retailer when claimed from the CER 
    Less 
    - Value of the applicable rebate and loan provided by Solar Victoria payable to the retailer
    Equals
    - Cost to the customer charged by the Retailer

    See treatment of GST and STCs on the invoice examples. 

    Invoice example (no loan) 

    Sample invoice

    Image of sample tax invoice

     

    Cross check to test the portal's treatment of incentives and GST against your invoice. 

    Image of Solar Provider Statement

     

    Invoice example with loan included

    Sample invoice: 

    Invoice sample (with loan)

     

    Cross check to test portal's treatment of incentives and GST against your invoice. 

    Image of Item 2 Test GST in portal

     

  • The GST liability applies to the total cost of the system before any discounts to the customer for the STCs or the Solar Victoria rebate and loan.

    The rebate is then deducted from the total cost of the system.

    For example, a system valued at $10,000 before GST will attract a GST liability of $1,000 leading to total cost of the goods and services inclusive of GST of being $11,000. The rebate and loan amount is then deducated from the $11,000.

    The retailer will be responsible for passing on the GST for the whole system to the ATO.

Reviewed 22 February 2021