Get your financial figures right before deciding on a solar system. You need to weigh the cost of the system against how much energy it will save you. Take the cost of the system and multiply it by its' lifespan. Now figure out how much energy you will use in that lifespan to determine if it is right for you.
You don't necessarily have to stick the solar panels in the typical locations you see in the brochures. There only needs to be a small gap of approximately 1" behind the panel for air circulation. You can find interesting positions anywhere on your property that work with the style and design of the surrounding area.