Want a solar system, but not sure if you can afford the upfront costs? Then you might want to consider a solar lease. Solar leases offer a much lower entry point for solar systems, while still giving you the benefits of having solar. However, it may not be the right option for you. With a lease, you do not own the solar system. In addition, it can have higher long-term costs than simply purchasing your solar system. Finally, you may not get tax credits or SRECs for the solar energy you produce.
Solar leases are designed to help you avoid some of the upfront costs of a solar system. The biggest benefit for most homeowners is that the lease eliminates the down payment requirement. The monthly fee covers the cost of the solar panels, equipment, and installation. You get the benefits of the savings from solar, not just the benefit of having a green system. If you choose a PPA agreement instead, you may not get those savings.
Another huge benefit of the lease program is maintenance. Because you do not own the equipment, you are not responsible for maintaining it. That means that the system is worry free. We handle all maintenance and all repairs.
Another benefit of solar leases are that you can budget for your payments. You know the amount of your monthly payments. You get the same benefit from a solar loan. However, you do not get that benefit with PPAs, since the price for your energy can vary depending on demand and can even exceed the cost of buying utilities directly from the electric company.
One of the biggest questions we get from people is whether leasing the solar system will reduce their monthly expenses. That can be a difficult question to answer. It depends on what you pay for your current electricity, how much sunlight you get, and the type of roof you have.
Finally, you have to consider whether solar installation is right for you. While the solar installer owns the system and is responsible for the maintenance, they are not responsible for maintaining the roof underneath. If you need to replace your roof, you may be responsible for additional costs for installation and uninstall for your current system. Unfortunately, the costs of that new roof are not part of the solar leasing program. So, you want to make sure your roof is in good shape before leasing solar panels.