Solar Can Increase Your Home's Value: Here's How

| 4/1/2016 10:58:00 AM

Solar and home value increase

If you own your home, you’ve probably heard that going solar can help you reduce your electric bill, delivering major savings over the 20+ years that your solar panels produce electricity. You may have also heard that installing a solar energy system on your roof can increase the value of your home – but by how much? It’s time to get past the sales pitch and understand exactly what solar companies mean when they say that your home value increases when you install solar. 

It’s True: Going Solar Can Increase Your Property Value by $20k or More

The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL), a Department of Energy-affiliated research lab, has studied solar home sales extensively. In 2015, researchers at LBNL compared sale prices of solar homes to homes without solar across eight different states to determine just how much value a solar energy system adds to a home. What they found: “Home buyers consistently have been willing to pay more for homes with host-owned solar photovoltaic (PV) energy systems —averaging about $4 per watt of PV installed—across various states, housing and PV markets, and home types. 

For a 5-kilowatt (kW) solar energy system (the average system size in the U.S.), $4/Watt means an added value of $20,000. That extra value is a big part of the story, but remember – it doesn’t even include the month-to-month savings you’ll see on your electricity bill when you install solar on your roof. Considering that the average solar panel installation cost in the U.S. is about $3.70/Watt, it’s easy to see why going solar is a smart investment in your home.

Your Solar Home Value Increase Depends on Where You Live

There are many factors that influence how much you can save when you go solar, but the most important one isn’t how much sun you get – it’s the cost of electricity from your utility. As a result, the value that a solar energy system will add to your home is dependent on where you live.

Because solar reduces or eliminates your electric bill, your 20-year savings from installing a solar energy system will be greater in areas where electricity is more expensive. That means high electricity prices can result in greater solar home values, because potential home buyers are willing to pay more for a home with greater solar savings., That also means that newer solar panels will add more value to your home, because they will generate electricity for a greater lifespan.

4/4/2016 6:05:20 AM

I've been asked this question a lot. I actually ended up doing a video about how solar panels can increase the value of your home and wanted to share it here:

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