Dan Andrews Doesn’t Understand How Victoria’s ‘Solar Homes’ Program Works

Victoria Premier Dan Andrews - Solar Homes

Dan Andrews, the Premier of Victoria, has been a busy man.  For four long months, Melbourne was locked in a desperate, life or death struggle with the coronavirus and only recently emerged victorious.  It’s well past time he stopped to pat himself on the back and take a well-earned rest, as he has clearly been doing everything by himself.  This was made apparent by a tweet he sent out yesterday showing he doesn’t understand how his own state’s Solar Homes Program works.

I don’t expect someone who has been waging a desperate battle against a dangerous pandemic1 to keep up to date on trivial matters such as the details of an incentive for Victorian home solar, but there should be someone available to make sure his tweets are factually accurate and prevent him looking like an idiot.  For the sake of our national pride, we want to avoid any Australian Premier resembling Donald Trump.

A Twitty Twitter

Here is the problematic tweet that proves he’s working all on his own with no one to fact-check him…

The problem is this tweet is demonstrably untrue. Victoria does not have 100,000 families who received half-price solar and paid nothing upfront.  This is because at the moment the Victorian Solar Homes Program consists of two incentives:

  • A subsidy of up to $1,850 off the cost of a rooftop solar power system or half it’s total cost — whichever comes first.
  • An interest-free loan equal to the above subsidy.

This means the maximum amount a household can currently receive off the upfront cost of a solar system is $3,700.  While this is a hefty chunk ‘o change, it is still less than what the typical Victorian solar system costs.

Using SolarQuotes’ top-secret prototype ‘Price Explorer’ tool I can see that while the average price paid for a solar power system2 is falling in Victoria3, the average price – before the Victorian rebate is applied- in the past 3 months was about $5,300.

price explorer

SolarQuotes’ secret prototype Price Explorer tool. Please don’t tell Finn I showed you this.

So only a small minority of Victorians will have had a solar power system installed for nothing upfront.  On top of this, not everyone who gets the subsidy also takes the interest-free loan.

But at least Dan didn’t attempt to claim borrowing money is the same as saving money, as Solar Victoria did here.

Get This Guy Some Help!

In Australia, it’s traditional for State Premiers to do everything themselves.  This includes digging mines, building bridges, and constructing highways.  I know this because every time a major piece of infrastructure gets completed the news will show the Premier in a hard hat putting the finishing touches on it.4

But all this work is too much for one man to handle.  Maybe a woman could do it, but even without a one-legged chromosome that contributes to colour blindness, baldness, and haemophilia, I wouldn’t recommend it5.

I know states are saying they’re hard up for money at the moment, but they really need to find it within their budgets to hire some sort of assistant or staff member who can check their Premiers’ tweets and stop them looking stupid.  It will also prevent them from getting lonely in those big, empty, State Government houses.

We’ve got to give Premiers some support, otherwise they’ll be too busy to fight disease for us.  I’ve heard from a trusted source that Dan Andrews is so busy that when someone asks him a question he only has one second to guess an answer and, as a result, he has been second-guessing everything from expert medical advice to how to run a quarantine hotel for months now.

But at least his workload should get easier thanks to Melbourne beating the virus.  Unfortunately, it’s now Adelaide’s turn to play with the idiot ball that has “COVID” stamped on the side.6


  1. Before I go into it, let’s give him a cheer for (hopefully) beating COVID-19 in Victoria: Dan, Dan, he’s our person, If he can’t do it no one will.
  2. as reported by reviewers on SolarQuotes
  3. most likely due to lots of cheap solar companies piling in to take advantage of the rebate
  4. And they’re often shown doing manual labour while wearing a suit.  Clearly, Australian Premiers are as tough as nails.
  5. Why oh Y were we men burdened with such ridiculous genetics?
  6. Australia has entire islands with empty resort hotels and almost incomprehensibly vast areas of outback, but capital cities are the best place we could come up with for quarantine hotels?  Given the state of the UK and US this is enough to make me think speaking English makes you stupid.
About Ronald Brakels

Many years ago now, Ronald Brakels was born in Toowoomba. He first rose to international prominence when his township took up a collection to send him to Japan, which was the furthest they could manage with the money they raised. He became passionately interested in environmental matters upon his return to Australia when the local Mayor met him at the airport and explained it was far too dangerous for him to return to Toowoomba on account of climate change and mutant attack goats. Ronald then moved to a property in the Adelaide Hills where he now lives with his horse, Tonto 23.


  1. Give it a rest Ron. A simple correction would suffice, rather than your usual long-winded snark. Let us Victorians enjoy some good news. 100,000 people have saved money and installed solar panels. Is that better?

    • Yes – that’s much better – because it is accurate. No apologies for expecting pollies to tell the truth.

      • I dunno mate, I’m getting pretty sick of people from other states telling us what we should have done, and bagging out our leaders. That’s for us to do. As another reporter said the other day: “I’ve never felt more Victorian, and less Australian”.
        You’d be just as cut up if SA gets stuck in lockdown for 6 months and you have to listen to everyone telling you how much better their state is.
        So a leader misunderstood the minutiae of the program. 🤷‍♀️ Big whoop. And it’s not even a bad one, I notice you didn’t post his next tweet that talks about him expanding the program. Does that not fit the narrative?
        Better a premier that writes his own tweets (and is only human) than a government that would charge their electric car owners (and I believe you own two?) $1000 per vehicle per year for the sheer gall of saving the planet.
        I like solarquotes, I do. I enjoy the irreverence. I like the useful data you’ve provided. I’ve been reading (and commenting) for years. But maybe pull your heads in a bit on this one. We’re sick of the Dan-bashing. You guys (the general media, and the federal government) have been doing it all year. Is it really so hard to send him an email explaining the technical difference, instead of this smug article? It wasn’t funny, it wasn’t irreverent, it was just kinda rude.

        • I like to bash Dan. He deserves it. Leading an amnesia filled incompetent so called quarantine program. Least we forget that this debacle cost 800 people their lives and thousands their livelihood and businesses, not to mention the mental health and civil liberties which were destroyed as a result. MarkP I take it you are not one of those who lost loved ones, a livelihood or a business?

          • This post actually praises Dan’s Covid response…

          • At least the annual 800+ deaths from “the Flu”rocketed to nill.
            Gosh. No! that can’t be right 😉

          • I’m one of the ones that lost my business, yup. Revenue went down by ~40%, and I got ousted by the board. Have struggled through missed mortgage payments and having my NBN and gas shut off. I’m not wealthy by any means, but thankfully we kept the house and one of the cars. Lost my mate’s Mum too, but she’s in NSW, so I guess that doesn’t count. She helped raise me, but it wasn’t caused by “an amnesia filled incompetent so called quarantine program”, she was just a bungled federal aged care victim. She was 63.
            Like Finn said, this post actually praises Dan’s awesome Covid response. I just take umbrage at bagging him out for a misunderstanding when his head has been focused on far more important issues.
            I guess it’s all still a bit raw.
            And, though it should go without saying, the next election will be the first time ever when I sling a vote his way.

        • “I notice you didn’t post his next tweet that talks about him expanding the program. Does that not fit the narrative?”


          • Thanks for linking to it. Do you think it should be in this (far more visible) article? I think it should be, but I’m not the one running the show.

  2. I wish we could get the Victorian Govt. to consider allowing the battery rebate for those that have already received a rebate for solar panels.Imagine with all those fit for purpose systems of recent origin how much benefit for us could come from that.Might even bring down the price of batteries.
    But I guess it’s seen as double dipping and therefore Un-Australian.

    • Agreed. Would love a battery, I know it’ll help the grid. But can’t justify the price yet.
      Annoyingly, I got solar panels before this rebate existed. And I still can’t use it on batteries. Oh well!

      • Mark P: “Annoyingly, I got solar panels before this rebate existed.”

        Could be worse. We gave all our tenants* solar electricity systems when 10-year contracts specified 47.135c / kWh, then our WA Gov offered us just 3c / kWh when we could finally afford to do our own home.

        We’d happily trade our idealogue for Andrews!

        * and YES, we’re still fighting to have them paid what they’re owed… .

        • Can’t win ’em all, mate. Just bask in the warm glow of helping the environment, I guess! I self consume most of my solar power, so the payback was surprisingly short. Would it prudent to suggest to your tenants to run air-con & dryers during the daylight hours? That’s made the biggest difference for us.

          • Thanks for the suggestion, Mark.

            Understandably, I’m reluctant to tell tenants how to live their lives.
            It’s rarely welcome… . 🙁

            What most annoys me in all this is the case of a single mum-of-four, who was put on a payment plan to pay $880 for power. She’d been in that house over 30 months… and the [email protected]@rds had paid her _zero_ FiT. I was able to recover around $660 for her… but they owe her much, much more than this.

            Fighting tooth-and-nail, I have been able to recover around $3400 for six families… but they’re owed _thousands_more… .

            Who would ever have thought a _Labor_ government would treat single mums, shop assistants, students and teacher aides like this?!

          • Fair call Lessor, now you mention it, I’d probably be pretty grumpy of my landlord told me when to use my air con. I’ll take that suggestion back!!!
            In regards to the Labor government screwing over single mums etc, well, there’s an old saying: Politicians and baby’s nappies should be changed often. And for the same reason. 😆

  3. Could have been a professional correction article to a simple error… but you took the opportunity to look completely unprofessional in a public forum representing your company… well done.
    Best to stick to providing solar advice, the area you’re an expert on and leave the medical / political commentary to your own social media profile or better yet – to someone who is an actual political expert (before Covid times, as everyone is a ‘political expert’ these days).

  4. Totally agree on HQ in cities (Note 6)

    If only we had a Federal government who would take their responsibility seriously and stop handballing OS arrivals to the States

  5. Keep it up Ron
    We know that if you did not annoy some of the people most of the time, and most of the people some of the time, and all of the politicians who say what their unelected minders tell them to say most of the time … no one would read your articles!
    And hence we (some of the people) would miss out on the often very useful information you and Finn provide that a person would be off their head to phone the relevant Department or Council Climate Change Adviser for any sort of coherent advice.

  6. Michael Cooney says

    I love reading you guys rants and psalms…
    You guys put me on the straight and narrow on quality equipment and how to go about sourcing said stuff…
    I paid $6000 3 years ago for a 6000 watt and 5kw inverter and have never paid a cent for electricity since then…
    In fact the system works so seamlessly that my friends think I’m bullshitting them ( till I show them the invoice)…
    And whilst we are talking about bullshitting and the solar arrangement, dangerous Dandrews has done a great job but the expression “upfront” seems to have swept Ronny off his pins…
    Ron, my man, if you were to buy a car for no up front cost, that ain’t a free car, just means the deposit has been arranged for you, you still have to arrange the remaining spondoolie…
    It’s a “figure of speech” we have to get a grip on the willingness to manipulate language in order to scratch together your weekly column.
    100% love your work and the time and effort you spend researching and citing…
    I’m a huge believer in the sungod Ra will provide🥰🙏😎

  7. Ronald. The “one legged chromosome” is being maligned by you unfairly. Genes for baldness, colour blindness and haemophilia are on the X chromosome.

    • Ronald Brakels says

      Yeah, but the Y chromosome doesn’t do anything about it. If there were two X chromosomes and one had an allele for colour blindness the other would say, “You have a spot of colour blindness there, sweetie. Let me cover it up for you.” But the Y chromosome is just like, “Yeah, whatever. I don’t care…” Even for haemophilia it just shrugs and says, “Clotting blood is over rated…”

  8. I am not confident that this post will get through, as most of my recent posts have been blacklisted by the blog administrator(s).

    But, in case this post does make it past the blacklisting …

    A good move by the Solar Quotes blog, which would be quite helpful to the blog readers, and to the members of legislatures, and to candidates for election to the legislatures, would be to publish a (progressively updated) comparison of the financial assistance provided by each state/territory parliament in Australia, to householders to install/upgrade domestic rooftop photovoltaic systems, both with and without behind the meter battery storage, and, for the upgrading for the addition of behind the meter battery storage, where systems are installed, that do not already have behind the meter battery storage.

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