Canadian company Sunwave Solar is under fire from multiple Alberta homeowners who claim they paid for a product/service they have yet to receive — months later.
Okotoks resident Larry Swanson had been thinking about getting solar panels installed for a while. So when a Sunwave salesperson came to his door in June, he jumped at the chance.
“I had been doing a lot of reading and research about solar and I was very interested in it,” Swanson said.
Swanson signed a contract and paid a $3,500 deposit. He said he was told he would be contacted shortly afterwards to start the work but did not get a call.
“I waited about two months and hadn’t heard anything,” he said. “So I gave him a phone call.”
Swanson said he was told the company was working on the design and he would be contacted when it was finished. Fast-forward to the start of December and he still had not heard from the company.
“I think we’ve been taken,” Swanson told Global News.
Swanson’s neighbours, Jim and Virdell Barclay, were also approached by Sunwave.
They too were keen to invest in solar power, adding they believe it’s environmentally-friendly and wallet-friendly.
“It would save us some money over the long run,” Jim Barclay told Global News. “It would be a while before we’d make up for any costs, initial costs, but we would actually save money on a monthly basis.”
But after also giving the company a $3,500 deposit, the Barclays said they too had no further contact with Sunwave. They started researching the company and said they were surprised by the negative reviews from many other clients.
“I wish we had done a little more checking initially,” Barclay said. “How many people right in this close (section of street) paid this money?”
Global News also checked out some reviews, including those on the Better Business Bureau in Ontario where the company is based. Many customers complained about same issues as Swanson and Barclay, prompting the BBB to give the company an “F” rating.
Global News also contacted the company by phone, email and text and received a statement from customer care.
It read in part: “Sunwave takes all customer complaints seriously and will continue to resolve all complaints directly with its customers.
“We will do our best to investigate and resolve the matter.”
Sunwave also requested we direct consumers to its website and have them contact the company themselves — something the Okotoks residents said they had all been doing.
Swanson did eventually get a call back from Sunwave Solar on Monday morning, after Global Calgary reached out to the company. He was told by a customer care representative that the delays were due to “supply shortage” issues. He was also told he could wait for those to resolve or put in a request for a refund.
He did the latter but said he isn’t holding out much hope of a resolution.