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Buying vs. Leasing a Solar System

Making the decision about whether to purchase or rent a solar energy system is an important step in the process of going solar. Much like buying or leasing a home, each choice has pros and cons, and it’s up to you to weigh the benefits of each to decide about how best to proceed.

Investing in Solar

Some of the things you should consider include:

  • Your solar energy goals;
  • Your financial objectives and considerations;
  • Responsibilities relating to system maintenance and upkeep; and
  • Home value and selling considerations.

When buying a photovoltaic (PV) solar system, you can either purchase it outright or finance it through a solar loan or a home equity line of credit (HELOC). You’ll own the system while making monthly payments until the system is fully paid off. Leasing is similar in that you also can finance it. However, you won’t own the solar energy system and get to enjoy all of the financial incentives.

No matter which route you choose, going solar has a number of financial and environmental benefits.

Buying Solar Energy

Purchasing a PV solar system is an investment in your home and financial future. Solar energy users in New Jersey save an average of 30% on their electric bill each month by using renewable!

In addition to looking sleek and modern, a solar energy system can actually increase the overall value of your home. According to research led by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, home values increase by an average of $15,000 for a 3.6 kilowatt (KW) system.

“Home buyers consistently have been willing to pay more for a property with PV across a variety of states, housing and PV markets, and home types. The study finds only a small and nonstatistically significant difference between PV premiums for new and existing homes.”

Studies also show that homes equipped with PV systems sell faster than traditional homes.

Buying your solar energy system also is beneficial if you want to:

  • Own the panels instead of leasing them from a third party;
  • Maximize your financial savings and returns on your investment;
  • Take advantage of the 30% federal solar investment tax credit (ITC);
  • Enjoy any state tax incentives and solar rebates, including net metering (sell excess solar energy for credit); and
  • Earn and sell solar renewable energy certificates (SRECs) per every thousand kilowatt hours (KWh), which is equal to one megawatt (MW). This is only available in some states, including New Jersey.

Leasing Solar Energy

Leasing a PV solar system has definite perks, as well as some drawbacks. Much like a house or car lease agreement, when you lease a solar system, you don’t actually own it. Instead, it’s owned by the third-party company that installs the system on your property and allows you to use it for a reduced energy cost each month.

Leases allow homeowners to enjoy using solar energy without having to make a large financial investment up front.

Because you won’t actually own the solar energy system, leasing is beneficial if you:

  • Want to have access to energy usage at a set, reduced rate that is lower than traditional utility costs;
  • Do not want to deal with the responsibility of maintaining or repairing the system;
  • Are not eligible for state or federal tax incentives; or
  • Aren’t sure you want to own a system and want to have the option of purchasing it later.

Why Buy Solar

By purchasing a residential solar system, you can enjoy financial benefits that are otherwise inaccessible. While the up-front costs of buying a solar system are greater, the long-term benefits are hard to beat:

  • You can take advantage of federal and state tax credits, incentives, and rebates;
  • Your monthly payments go toward owning a system instead of lease payments;
  • Some solar companies place liens on homes that have their leased solar systems that span the length of the contracts; and, as a result,
  • Leased solar systems can potentially deter prospective buyers.

Because you can purchase a solar system from CODE Green Solar through cash or financing, you have the freedom to choose the method that best works for your budget. Our financing programs start at $0 down.

Speak with one of our solar experts today to start saving money

Our affordable solar energy systems can ease your stress and help you stay within your budget. You can enjoy additional peace of mind when purchasing from CODE Green Solar because your system will be covered by our no-cost comprehensive warranty.