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Houses with solar panels sell faster and cost more. Here’s why

Even if you don’t plan to live in one house your whole life, installing solar panels makes a lot of sense. You’ll likely sell it faster and you can get up to $20,000 more for a home with a solar system. Learn how solar panels increase property costs and why they make houses more popular on the market in this article.

Demand for ‘green’ houses grows

People looking to buy homes prefer ones with built-in clean energy generators. In California, houses with solar panels used to sell 20% faster than those without, according to experts from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). For a buyer, getting a solar system along with the house means the ever-growing bills will be much less of a problem.

2.2%

average annual increase in electricity costs in the US

Environmental friendliness is what is also attractive about solar-paneled houses. Solar panels produce no carbon emissions, odor, or noise. Paired with a battery system, they are a great alternative to gas generators. With growing concerns about climate change, more people are opting for green energy to contribute to the fight against global warming.

Energy-efficient upgrades raise HERS score

A key reason for that growing demand is that solar panels improve a home's energy efficiency, measured by the Home Energy Rating System (HERS). HERS assigns scores on a scale from 0 to 150, with lower scores indicating better energy efficiency. Resale houses are rated at around 130, while new ones could score around 100.

The HERS score directly impacts the selling price, with lower-scoring homes being 3-5% more expensive and selling 2.7% more often. Buyers of HERS-rated homes also tend to have better mortgage profiles. To boost the HERS score and raise resale value, homeowners are encouraged to do a home energy audit and consider energy-efficient upgrades, like installing solar panels.

In Europe, some governments require homeowners to improve energy efficiency to the point where you can’t sell or rent a house if its score is too low. Similar regulations might be introduced in the US, making homes with clean energy generators more appealing to buyers.

Black solar panels increase curbside appeal

In the past, many people didn’t like how solar panels affected a home's appearance. Blue-ish polycrystalline solar panels had a hard time blending with the roof. Monocrystalline panels that became dominant on the market in the pas decade have a much better design. Black solar panels blend well with a house's aesthetic and sometimes even enhance its overall look. The best-looking all-black panels come from brands like Solaria, Maxeon, Q CELLS, Silfab and more.

Out of stock

Q CELLS 400W Solar Panel 132 Cell Q.PEAK DUO BLK ML-G10+

  • Rated Power Output 400 W
  • Voltage (VOC)45.3 V
  • Number of cells132
  • Cell TypeMonocrystalline

Delivery on Apr 26 – May 01

Houses with solar panels bring profits

Having a solar system typically makes your home more valuable and attractive to buyers. A house with solar panels can sell for approximately 4% more than one without, according to real-estate agency Zillow. With the average cost of a house in the U.S. in 2024 being $500,000, adding solar panels could potentially increase its value by $10,000-$20,000. The actual boost may vary based on the condition of your panels and roof, but when you sell a house with solar panels, you generally recover the money you invested in them.

What about taxes? While solar panels increase your home's value, it doesn't necessarily mean higher taxation. In many states, solar panels are excluded from property tax assessment, which ensures that you pay the same amount whether your house has a solar system or not. Check solar incentives in your state in our magazine!

Solar system pays off in 7-8 years

For buyers, getting a house with a solar system is also a good deal. They get a low electric bill from the start and don’t have to go through the installation and permitting process of a PV system. The comfort of being able to look at logs for solar system performance from previous months should also be considered.

Tatiana Ivanova
Author

A home with a solar system may be a more attractive option to buyers but not if the system is leased. A contract with the leasing company clarifies what exactly happens to solar panels when the house owner changes, but in general, buyers don’t want property that comes with the baggage of extra payments.

The average payback time of a solar system in the US is 7-8 years. That means the panels pay off 2-3 times throughout their lifespan. If you buy a house with a 10-year-old solar system, it will likely bring back its value one more time in your possession.

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Andrey Gorichenski
Senior Editor

Andrey had been a news editor and freelance writer for a number of medias before joining A1SolarStore team. Climate change and its impact on people's lives has always been among his interests and it partially explains his degree in Philosophy and Ethics.

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