By Chad Arend, The Arend Team

Accordingly to Alex Baird with Arizona Solar Brokers, here are the differences between purchasing and leasing solar panels for your home:

“Both options have pros and cons. When we look at a solar lease option, the main advantage is that it is very low risk. The solar company owns the panels and is completely responsible for them. You don’t have to worry about anything with taxes or income-related requirements. You just get to enjoy monthly savings and know that you’re doing a good thing for the planet. The biggest con to leasing is kind of the same as the pros, however. Since you don’t own anything, you don’t get maximize the real savings power of the solar system. You don’t get to claim any of the free government money, or the increase in home value and equity of the solar system.”

“When it comes down to it, owning your solar panels is usually the way to go,” he continues. “You don’t have to pay anything out of pocket with the current financing options. Your electric bill is drastically reduced, and you’re left with a much smaller solar payment. Plus you’ve made thousands of dollars in free money from the government.”

From a realtor’s perspective, I fully agree with the comments Alex makes regarding the home value and solar purchase. A leased system will have little to no effect on the home’s value. In fact, it could be a deterrent for some buyers that don’t see the value in a solar system or don’t want one. Since the lease typically requires $0 upfront, and the payment could increase throughout time, no value continues to the new owner. When purchasing a solar system, either outright or via loan, the system will translate value to a new buyer as they’ll get to use the system at a reduced cost.
Currently in the 85085 zip code, homes with an owned solar system have sold for an average of $502,800 at 2,956 square feet or $176.23 per square foot. Compared to those with a leased system of $460,750 at 2,696 or $167.61 per square foot.

That being said, I don’t see the increase in home value by more than the cost of the system, so if you are considering moving within the next couple years, it would be best to stay away from solar in the interim. But if you plan to stay in your home for the foreseeable future, it might certainly be worth looking into.

The Arend Team strives to be on the forefront of the local real estate market and provide the best service and response time to long-time clients and new customers alike. We keep on the forefront of technology, yet also keep tried and true methods. Our industry skills include aggressive negotiation tactics, local knowledge, always update-to-date contract knowledge, premier marketing tools and a strong support staff. We always assure every client involved in the real estate transaction is “kept-in-the-know” on each aspect of the buying or selling process. Our goal is to make sure we maintain a true “clients first” attitude toward all aspects of our business.