By Rhone Resch, president & CEO, Solar Energy Industries Association
Warm weather tends to draw people out hunting for a new home or to inspire others to make home improvements. It turns out home owners with solar energy systems may have the upper hand.
In 2006, my family installed a 6-kilowatt photovoltaic (PV) system on our roof that converts sunlight into electricity. That means that I’m not only using clean energy, but also saving money on my monthly electric bill, and even making extra income whenever my system produces more energy than my family needs. It’s the only home improvement I know of that generates money for my family’s checkbook. Now, I’ve recently learned that my solar system actually increases my home value, too.
A new study by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory reveals strong evidence that homes with PV systems sell for a premium over homes without solar. In California, the average PV system boosts home prices by roughly $17,000!
This study confirms what I and many in the solar industry know to be true. Solar can be a solid investment for home owners and a revenue generator for homebuilders. This report adds to previous reports that found homes with solar sell faster than those without, which is great for solar families looking to move or purchase a new home during any season.
It’s no surprise. Independent polls have confirmed that 94 percent of Americans feel the U.S. should use more solar. The combination of low electricity bills, improving home values, and a recovering residential real estate market has no doubt led numerous consumers across the country to go solar.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rhone Resch is the president and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). At SEIA, Rhone is responsible for all aspects of the association's operations and implementation of the industry's strategic
priorities. He has over 15 years of experience in the public and private sector working in clean energy development and climate change issues.