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When Is Solar Energy A BAD Idea?

solar-panels-publicdomainpictures-netSolar energy is quickly gaining in popularity. It promises to reduce our dependency on non-renewable energy sources while slashing our utility bills. What’s not to love about it, right?

Well, you may not love it too much if you intend on selling your home. The most popular way to obtain a solar electric system is to lease one. Most leases are written for a specified period during which, if the home owner sells the property, the buyer either has to assume the lease or the seller has to pay penalties to break the lease.

Although the promise of lower electric bills may appeal to the home owner, the buyer may not want to assume the expense in which case the solar energy system actually becomes a liability in the sale of the home. I’ve seen this happen time and again with water softener systems, which are often installed under a lease agreement as well. Many, if not most buyers are not interested in assuming the lease, which leaves the seller paying what often amounts to high penalty fees to cancel the agreement. Realtors are reporting the same hesitance of buyers when a home is fitted with a leased solar energy system.

If you are contemplating leasing a solar system, keep in mind that if you plan on moving before the terms of the lease are up, that energy-saving array on the roof may actually lose you a sale, or end up costing you money to break the lease in order to sell your home.

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