Solar Panel Financing
We discussed Solar Electricity in a previous article which you can find here, in this article we will be discussing solar panel financing. A lot of companies allow for financing when switching to solar panels. We will discuss questions that you should be asking when inquiring about solar systems, what you need to know about financing which will include the pros and cons of solar panel financing.
Questions To Ask: Solar Panel Financing
This is not an all inclusive list of questions to ask when inquiring about solar panels systems for your home. We will do a follow up article to cover a wide variety of questions you need to be asking before converting to a solar panel system.
How much electricity should my system produce?
In order to receive an accurate answer here, the solar installer should analyze at least 12 months worth of your homes power bills. This will help the installer to give you an accurate size of the system you will need. Be sure you know in which direction your home is facing. This will help to determine the electricity that will be produced. For example: the average production is 500kWh is the average electricity produced from a south facing home. If the company is guaranteeing more than this you should get a second opinion.
What is the lifespan of the system?
A well maintained system will operate more than 20 years! The best way to ensure your system last 20 years or longer is to have the solar panel system installed and maintained professionally.
How is a solar panel maintained?
The solar panels have very little moving parts so there isn’t a whole lot of maintenance required. What you need to do, however, is ensure there isn’t too much dust on the solar panels. Removing dust, debris, and bird droppings from your solar panels will ensure your solar panels last for over 20 years.
In order to remove debris or dust spray your the panels with a garden hose. If the water doesn’t remove everything you can use a sponge and just gently clean the panels.
Will my system come with a warranty?
Most companies will offer some sort of warranty. It never hurts to ask if you aren’t sure. The typical warranty of a solar system is 25 years. Ask the company you are working with, as this could vary depending on the company.
Is labor included with the warranty?
Most companies offer a labor warranty along with the system warranty. Some states even require this in order for the system to be eligible for state rebates. If you are unsure ask the company.
Pros and Cons Of Solar Panel Financing
Buying and installing a solar system has dropped significantly since they first came to market. I know a lot of individuals are still concerned about making the move to solar electricity. Financing has become an option when wanting to move to a solar system. This means the system installer company owns and maintains the system. The homeowner pays them a monthly fee. The financing company/installer would maintain the system. Moving to solar is becoming more and more affordable and with incentives to do so, even you can afford to go green! Below we discuss some of the pros and cons of solar panel financing.
- Your electrical bill could possibly be less than what you were paying for electricity with the electrical company.
- The company will take care of all the maintenance to your solar panel system for the life of your lease which is typically 20 years.
- The company will guarantee the solar panel systems performance for the life of the lease.
- You lease a solar system the company will receive the rebates and incentives. This helps to lower the overall cost which SHOULD in turn lower your lease payments.
- When you lease anything there is an interest rate. Interests rates could increase over time.
- The panel system is borrowed and does not belong to you.
- If you don’t agree with the lease terms the company can and will remove the solar system from your home.
- The lease payment could cost you more than you were paying the electrical company.
- When you choose to sell your home before the lease is up: you would need to convince the buyer to take over the lease payments. If the buyer does in fact want to take over the lease they payments they would first need to qualify to do so. If the buyer does not want to take over the lease payments you may have to pay off the lease in full, which you could be penalized for.
- When the lease terms end you will either have to sign another lease or you will have to buy the system from the company. This could end up costing you way more in the end than if you had initially bought the system outright in the beginning.
With many incentives and rebates you CAN afford a solar system without the help of financing. Investing in solar power system is more affordable than ever. There are many benefits and investing in solar panels is just one way to go green!