Go Solar to Increase Your Home’s Value

Go Solar to Increase Your Home’s Value

Homes with solar panels sold for an average of $17,000 more than comparable homes without solar systems over a nine-year time period in California, according to a new study by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Solar advocates have long argued that the initial capital cost of generating solar electricity would be offset both by lower electricity bills and by an increase in home value at the time of sale. This study proves it.

The study investigated the records on 72,000 California home sales between 2000 and 2009 - 2,000 of which had solar panels installed at the time of sale. To insure a true apples-to-apples comparison, they controlled other factors that can affect the home price, including housing market fluctuations, neighborhood effects, the age of the home, the size of the home and the parcel on which it was located.

Researchers found that homeowners generated an average of $5.50/watt for a 3,100 kW system – the typical size for a residential property. Existing homes with solar panels generated between $6-7.70/watt premium while new homes earned $2.30-2.60/watt premium, probably reflecting the lower cost of today’s solar installations and the willingness of new homebuilders to accept a lower premium to move inventory.

California has almost 100,000 solar systems installed, and about 90% of those are residential systems. So that’s good news for home owners and another great reason to go solar! To access the full report visit the Environmental Energy Technologies Division web site.

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