Renewable energy incorporation in many countries takes different forms. In many developed countries, grid-tied solar photovoltaic (PV) installations are widely coupled with lucrative Feed-in-Tariffs (FiT). However, conventional grid-tied solutions are not readily viable in many developing countries mainly due to intermittent grids with load shedding and, in some cases, lack of net-metering or FiT. Load shedding refers to an intentional electrical power shutdown by the utility company where electricity delivery is stopped for non-overlapping periods of time over different parts of the distribution region. This results in a non-continuous availability of the utility grid for many consumers over the course of a day. In this work, the key challenges in the integration of solar energy explicitly in residential power back-up units are reviewed and system hardware level requirements to allow optimized solar PV utilization in such intermittent grid environments are analyzed. Further, based upon the low-cost sensing and real-time monitoring scheme, an online optimization framework enabling efficient solar incorporation in existing systems to achieve minimum grid dependence in intermittent grid environments is also provided. This work is particularly targeted for over 1.5 billion residents of semi-electrified regions in South Asia and Africa with the weak and intermittent grid.