You can dip your toes in the solar energy waters by simply installing a solar powered whole house fan. A solar powered attic fan turns on automatically when it becomes too warm. You'll reduce the cost of cooling your home by having this solar-powered attic fan remove hot air from your home. Additionally, as it is solar powered, your power bill will go down, not up.
See how best practice design principles come together in home design.
Remember to account for any extra influences when you calculate how much you can expect your solar panels to output. There are some intended outputs specified on panels, but that is only accurate if they are placed in an area that is sunny all the time. Any obstruction from trees or from a cloudy day will decrease the output.