Selling/Buying a home with solar panels installed.

Discussion in 'Sun City General Discussions' started by aggie, Jun 6, 2018.

  1. aggie

    aggie Active Member

    Does all go smoothly when trying to transfer a leased system to the buyer? Do those that have paid cash for their system get all their investment covered or are they unable to raise the sales price enough? Just curious as this is a relatively new issue.
  2. GCotten

    GCotten Member

    Aggie....Based upon information that I have a purchaser of a home that has a leased solar system must qualify with the solar company that holds the lease in order to take over the lease. I would imagine that would not be a difficult hurdle. I have a leased system on my home and the lease document contains wording to that effect.

    For those that have paid cash receiving full value of their investment appears to be a much more complicated issue at the moment. Appraisers appear to be the current major player on their interpretation of comparable sales as to the sale price of properties with and without solar systems and leased or purchased systems. There appear to be some formulas out there some appraisers are using but it is complicated. So far we have not been able to get simple straight answers. Evolution is still occurring with this product. The thing that we do know is that today lenders treat a solar lease payment as a long term debt just like a car payment. That practice in my opinion is an unfair call as the lease payment is designed to be less than the electric bill. Your electric bill is NOT treated as a long term debt. I am sure there are other observations out there and what may be true today will change tomorrow or the next day.
  3. Cynthia

    Cynthia Well-Known Member

    A consideration would be the age of the panels as they decrease in efficiency over time. Of course if you have good inverters those will last a very long time. If the panels are out-dated or have decreased in efficiency, it's still much cheaper to replace the panels and return back to full efficiency than buying a house without solar. This could be one of the issues that complicates appraisals.
  4. aggie

    aggie Active Member

    Does anyone have the battery storage system so that they can use that energy when the power goes out like it did yesterday in a widespread area of Sun City south of Grand Avenue? Once a battery storage system becomes affordable it would be more desirable to have a rooftop solar system even if it's just enough to power up the A/C in the summertime.
  5. Cynthia

    Cynthia Well-Known Member

    The battery storage is still not quite there yet, according to company that installed my solar in 2017, but should be soon. My inverters do have a special feature that other inverters do not. When the power goes out I have 2 outlets that will still work. Each outlet allows 1500 watts. So although I couldn't run my air conditioners I could at least run fans, charge my phone etc...when the sun is out. They don't work at night. You could also buy a small back-up battery that will let you run a fan and a few items. Most are less than $100.
  6. BPearson

    BPearson Well-Known Member

    No question,owning them is far better than leasing them. Probably won't get back your full investment at point of sale, but you also have to factor how much you saved (either way) once you do sell. For example: Ours are leased, but we have been saving at least $50 per month on our utility bills and that increases every year despite degradation (figuring a 5% inflation factor per year in rates). On outright ownership, you'd need to know your monthly electric bill to figure your yearly savings. If you averaged $200 per month, that's $2400 per year, In 10 years that's $24,000 which is probably more than you paid after incentives and rebates.

    Unfortunately with the grandfathering gone, the solar leases won't be as attractive. And to be honest, they were never a great deal, more a buffer against inflation.
  7. Cynthia

    Cynthia Well-Known Member

    To me buying is like paying electric bills 7 years upfront. Then, most or part free for as long as they last. You can still get the 30% off your fed income tax until 2020 which makes it much cheaper (hopefully they will extend it)

    Sadly trump and his oil buddies are working to kill solar the best they can. The new 30% tariff is creating job layoffs too. Billions in projects shelved, according to Reuters. I’m sure it’s hurting the small installers too.
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2018

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