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Selling a Home with Solar Panels

Green Bolt
Selling a Home with Solar Panels

Solar on homes in New Jersey has been increasing in popularity year after year. There are now over 100,000 home solar systems in New Jersey and over time, homeowners will eventually move with the solar panels still attached to the roof. But what happens when you want to move from your house with solar panels or want to purchase a house with solar panels? The most important thing to consider off the bat is that solar panels will generally increase the value of the home.

Lawrence Berkley National Laboratories completed a study which produced results to validate this observation. It found that an average house gets an additional $15,000 for the installation of solar panels. Other than that, there have been more studies which produced similar results further adding meaning to this idea. For instance, a study by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory concluded that it adds an addition of $20 for every dollar in energy bill savings with the installation of solar systems in homes.

Even with an increase in home value and reduction in monthly costs, not every buyer may be keen on the solar panels if they are older and not aesthetically pleasing. Many people like the look of solar panels. Some of them can be in all black and sleek looking. Still, some homeowners will not appreciate the quintessential blue panel with a silver frame on the front of the home. Some liken the large ground mounts that make up a good percentage of home solar systems in NJ to the ancient giant satellite dishes from the 80s and early 90s.

If the savings are strong and the buyer is OK with the system design, the next consideration is the means of solar purchase. If the panels were purchased outright by the existing homeowner the transfer of ownership is easy because the panels are part of the home. The buyer of this home with a home solar system should be sure to get all the paperwork and information on the system in case of any solar repair and maintenance may be necessary. The existing homeowner can even keep the solar SRECS for themselves or give them to the new homeowner. If the array is quality, looks nice, and is saving the home money every month, buying a home with solar panels already installed is a huge win.

If the solar was purchased by a lease/PPA or loan then the transfer of ownership is common but may have some minor contingencies. First of all, with a lease or PPA, it is important from the start to sign up for a good program. A new homeowner is not going to want a solar lease or PPA that is going to increase in value to the point that it will not save them any money. So as the seller, be sure to pick a good program or you run the risk of delaying the home sale or in the worst case scenario, having to buy out the lease/PPA.

If the solar is purchased with a loan, the transfer is generally quite simple. With any finance program, then if a buyer can purchase a home then their credit is good enough to have solar on their New Jersey home. With the loan, the new homeowner will have a solar payment but a lower electric bill plus incentives. Be sure to find out what type of a system you are buying when you purchase a home solar system with your new home in New Jersey.


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