I interviewed quite a few companies (mostly through EnergySage, and some others through word of mouth), and chose NRG for a number of reasons: price, Diamond Certification, the knowledge and responsiveness of the salesperson, the long workmanship warranty (40 years), the age and diverse skillset of the company (30+ years, family run, works in GC, roofing and HVAC as well as solar), as well as a guarantee that the system would be installed by the end of the year or we would get $500 back. And my initial contacts with them were positive. I had a detailed conversation with my project coordinator (Shanna) in September 2019, shortly after I signed the contract, and she was friendly and knowledgeable. I knew that the timeline would be toward the end of the year because of the number of people trying to get their projects done before the tax credit decreased. However, I didn't hear anything more until late October, when I learned that Shanna was no longer with the company and that I would be getting a new project coordinator (Nicole). This stuff happens so I just rolled with it. A week later we arranged for a site visit to take pictures, and I thought we were off and running. I emailed again a couple weeks later (late November) to check our status and there was no further progress (I assume final design and permitting, but I never got a clear answer). That was the last contact I had with her. I contacted her 3 more times (emails early December, and the week before Xmas, with a phone call/VM in between) and never got a response. The last time I emailed them I communicated my displeasure with the lack of communication, and that same day I got a text message from the production team (Lesley) that our install was scheduled for 12/28. Still nothing from Nicole.
Given their track record at this point, I texted Lesley the Friday before to confirm that the team was coming (and to see what time), but didn't hear anything back. The panels themselves were delivered that day, so I had at least some reassurance that progress was being made. The day of the installation, the crew of 3 arrived (whew!) at around 10. They were pleasant and got right to work. We were out of the house between 10:30 and 3:00, and when we got back to the house they looked like they had made good progress (they had installed 10 of the 14 panels). Then at one point they just disappeared. No knock on the door to tell us they were leaving, no phone call or text to give us an update. Two panels were still leaning up against the house, 12 had been installed on the roof. What?! I texted Lesley again to see what was up. No response. I emailed the production team and cc'd Nicole. Got a response back from Nicole immediately (automated reply: "I have taken a leave of absence".) I called the number and got someone human, at least. Not too friendly, didn't seem at all concerned that the team had left without any communication, just took my number and said someone would call me back, which never happened. Now we're just waiting for the install to be completed.
Needless to say, this hasn't been an overwhelmingly positive experience. Because they have thus far kept to the timeline, I'm obliged to give more than 1 star, but the lack of communication is more than disconcerting. At this point, it's completely unacceptable for a company that seemed to pride itself on customer service. What happens when the system is actually up and running and I run into a problem? I have absolutely no faith at this point that they will provide timely service and repair. How does a company like this get Diamond Certified? Perhaps because it's a Southern California based company and only recently started working in the Northern part of the state, so they don't have as established of a relationship with their subcontractors? Also what is going on at the company that their project coordinators keep leaving?
Bottom line is that delays happen in any project, and I understand, but if there is no communication with the client, that is no way to run a business. I will update this review as needed.
Since my initial review, I have had a much more positive experience with NRG. I spoke to Sherry on the phone and she has taken over our project management. She ensured that we were given updates at every step and tried very hard to make things right. The installation was completed and the inspection done on 12/31/19. There was one small issue on the inspection (a placard needed to be placed) so they came back on 1/7 for the final inspection. We passed and are generating power! We finally received PTO from PG&E about 1 month later (not NRG's fault that it took so long, although they suggested that it could take as few as 2-7 business days, while it actually took 30 calendar days). Since then I have had one informational phone call with the company to make sure I understood how the system worked and how to shut it down, and everything seems to be in good working order at this time. As of this billing cycle, we are generating slightly more power than we are using, which seems pretty good for February.
I have a hard time overlooking everything that happened, but I am willing to give them the benefit of the doubt and say that our experience was probably more of a one-off than a fundamental issue with the company. They really did try very hard to make things right with us and that goes a long way. Screwups happen on occasion and the mark of a good company is how they deal with them. I plan to revise my rating (hopefully higher) after a few more months in service to see if this improvement in customer service is the true NRG.