Solar Panel Leases: All Your Questions Answered
If you’re considering switching to solar and you’re weighing up the option of leasing your panels, you’ll no doubt have many questions that you’d like answering before you decide.
Both leasing and purchasing solar panels have their own individual strengths and weaknesses when it comes to determining which of the two options is the right one for you. Solar Panel Leases: All Your Questions Answered
In this article, we’ll cover some of the top questions that we get asked by prospective customers that are considering leasing solar panels, so that you have all the information to help you make up your mind.
Solar Panel Leases: All Your Questions Answered
- What Happens If The Price Of Electricity Drops And I Am Bound By A 20 Year Contract?
Our leases are typically 35% less than what you’re paying your utility company right now. While we can’t predict what will happen in the future, looking at what has happened in previous years gives us a good indication of what is likely to happen.
- Historically, while some utility companies might drop their electricity rates for a particular year, this drop is almost always made up for by an increase in prices the following year.
- In the last 10 years, the price of electricity in Illinois has increased by an average rate of 4.1% per year.
- With this in mind, it’s highly unlikely that the price of electricity will drop below what you’re paying for leasing your solar panels.
- What Happens If I Lease Solar Panels And I Want To Sell My Home?
The issue of what happens with a lease if they decide they want to move homes is understandably one of the biggest concerns that we see in customers considering a solar panel lease.
Some companies include hefty transfer fees, or even refuse to allow the lease to be transferred and make you pay to end the lease early.
If you acquire your solar panel lease from Green Home Makeover, the lease is fully transferable to the new homeowner, without them having to qualify for it.
Depending on the individual lease terms that you’ve opted for, the transfer fee is between $0 and $200.
- What Happens If My Solar Panels Develop A Fault?
If your solar panels or the rest of your system develops any kind of a fault, the defective parts will be repaired or replaced within a very short timeframe.
In addition to this, our solar panel leases are covered by the industry’s most comprehensive performance guarantee.
This means that for the period that your system is down or underperforming, you will be reimbursed for the power that your system has not produced, ensuring that you will not be out of pocket.
If you acquired your lease through Green Home Makeover and your system is supposed to produce 1,200 kWh and it only produces 1,000 kWh, you will be reimbursed fully for the missing 200 kWh.
Other companies reimburse underperformance at a little over half the rate per kWh that customer is paying them to lease the system.
- What Happens If I Have A Solar Lease And I Need To Change My Roof?
If you purchase or lease solar panels and your roof needs to be replaced, usually your insurance will cover the cost of disassembly, storage and reassembly of your solar system.
If, however, you decide to replace your roof purely for aesthetic reasons, you will have to pay the associated costs yourself.
The costs are variable and subject to change but at the time of writing this, it costs a $500 flat fee, plus $100 per panel.
- What Happens If I Decide I Want To Purchase The Solar Panels I’m Leasing?
Maybe you’d like to purchase solar panels to get greater cost savings, but you don’t have the money right now and the Fed’s interest rate hikes mean that financing is out of the question, so you’ve decided to lease.
If this is the case, you might be wondering if it’s possible to purchase the solar panels that you sign a lease on at some point down the line, when you’ve saved enough money.
If you get a solar panel lease through Green Home Makeover, you can opt to purchase your solar panels from year 5 onwards.
In this case, the value of the system will be appraised by a third party to estimate how much the system is worth, and that’s what you pay.
- What Happens If I Want To End My Solar Lease Early?
If you’re leasing solar panels and you decide that you’d like to end the lease early, what happens is dependent on how well your system is performing.
If your solar panels are not delivering what was promised and are consistently underperforming, you can choose to cancel the lease and the system will be removed with no additional fees or charges.
If your system is producing the amount of electricity that was promised in your lease contract, you would have to buy your way out of the lease.
If this is the case, and it’s past the fifth year of the lease, it would likely make more financial sense to just purchase the system as a means to ending the lease early.
- What Are Green Home Makeover’s Solar Panel Lease Terms?
Below we’ve listed an overview of some of the key terms that are included in the solar leases that we provide:
- The solar panel leases that are available through Green Home Makeover have a fixed duration of 20 years.
- We are able to offer solar leases to customers that have a credit score of 650 or better.
- Typically, the amount you pay for your lease is around 35% less than what you’re paying for your electricity when you sign the contract.
- The lease is covered by a performance guarantee, and any underperformance will be reimbursed in full.
- If you sell your home, the lease is automatically transfers to the new homeowner, regardless of their credit score
- From the fifth year onwards, you can opt to purchase your solar panels, following a third party appraisal
Are You Ready To Save With Solar?
Whether you’re purchasing or leasing solar panels, switching to solar is the smart choice in 2023 – not in the least because of the amount of money you can save over their lifetime.
If you’re unsure which option is the right one for your home, it’s best to consult the experts so that you have all of the information.
At Green Home Makeover, we’re a team of solar consultants, with more than 8 years of industry experience, helping homes all across Illinois to install solar panels.
We’ll assess your home and your home and your energy requirements, advise you on what option makes the most sense from a financial standpoint, and we’ll manage your solar project, from A to Z. All you need to worry about is being home on the day of the installation.
If you’d like to know more, get in touch today, for a free, no-obligation consultation and quote.