So you’ve gone solar. Congratulations! You’re standing on the sidewalk, arms folded, surveying the new solar panels on your home with quiet approval. You think proudly about the meaningful step you’re taking to fight climate change (not to mention the money you’ll save on your utility bill). Feels pretty good, right? But what happens when you’re ready to move on to your next home? In this article, we’ll discuss your options.

In the US, the average family owns a home for 13.3 years. Some families may own the same homes for generations, while others move around every 2–3 years. Moving is simply a part of life, and that’s why Poly Energy helps make it easy to sell your home with solar. Depending on the ownership agreement on your system, there are a few options you’ll want to consider.

Purchase:  You bought the system outright, or got a solar loan to buy the system.

Option 1: Most homeowners simply roll any remaining costs for the system into the sale price of the home. This is attractive to buyers because their new home will include a solar system with no monthly payments. Depending on the system size and the home’s usage, this can often mean no electricity payments at all. 

Option 2: Depending on your finance lender when you financed your system, there may be an option that you can transfer your solar loan directly to the new home buyers. They’ll assume the monthly loan payments and benefit from a fixed payment structure for their electricity. Some buyers may prefer this option because it keeps the sale price of the home down, and still allows them to budget their electricity costs over a longer period of time. 

Option 3: It’s your system. If you want to, you can keep it! Of course, there are charges to remove and reinstall the system, along with any roof repairs that might be needed. However, if you bought the system outright or you’re close to paying it off, this might be an economically sound choice.

Lease/PPA: You pay a monthly bill for the power the equipment produces.

For these contract types, the agreement is fully transferable to the new homeowner. They’ll get all the benefits of solar energy without having to pay any additional money towards the house. At the end of the agreement, they’ll have the option to renew, purchase the system for fair market value, or have the solar company remove the system at no cost.

When it comes to home value, it’s been shown that a solar system increases the sale price of a home by an average of $15,000. The study, from Berkeley Lawrence National Laboratory, looked at 22,000 home sales across 8 states, making this the most comprehensive study of its kind. In addition to the increased sale value, a solar system can also impact homes desirability. A solar system reduces or eliminates electricity costs for the building, and that’s something no other home feature can do.

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