Team member Sara White is a National Association of Realtors (NAR) Green Designee, and is an expert on green features. Sara believes that every step toward a greener, more sustainable environment is a step in the right direction!
Recently, while helping clients gather up a list of homes to view during their next visit to town, Sara ran across a listed home with leased solar panels. This raised a few questions and things to think about. Here are a few facts to consider if a home has a leased solar PV (Photovoltaic) system:
- TEP’s annual percentage rate increase has historically been 1.25%. Solar companies, that lease solar PV systems, will have an annual rate increase anywhere from 3%-6%, which is added to the monthly payments each year. You can see where these companies make their money, yes?! Think of this type of lease as being similar to a reverse mortgage. Ouch!
- PV systems are built based on the current homeowner’s energy usage and the payment plan is set in stone for the entire length of the lease terms. The new owner(s) may or may not have the same energy usage. If the previous owner(s) were fulltime occupants, then it’s a disadvantage to the current owner(s) if they are not full-time occupant(s). You are now paying for energy that you will never use!
- Leased solar PV systems are considered a negative or a lien on a property. When purchasing a property with a PV system, the buyer(s) have to qualify for the lease and take on that lien.
Hope that these few facts are helpful when deciding to purchase a home with a leased solar PV system. Always do your due diligence and research all details! Know the difference between leased solar and owned solar!