A small but growing number of solar-energy companies are offering all-inclusive services designed to make residential solar-power installations affordable and hassle-free. Companies such as California-based SolarCity offer free installations and no-fuss maintenance in exchange for a monthly lease and the right to claim subsidies on the homeowner's behalf. "Humans are lazy by nature. They want to do the right thing, but they don't want to jump through 10 hoops to do it," says SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive.

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