Solar panels reduce energy costs but dont draw new buyers

With Colorado’s abundant sunshine, going solar makes sense to help reduce your energy bills and help save the planet.

But does adding solar panels make sense as a homeowner to boost your home’s value and help with resale?

Real estate agents caution adding solar panels probably won’t boost your potential sale price.

“Solar panels are a huge advantage for your own personal reasons,” says Allie Carlson, West + Main managing broker. “You can offset your energy bill.”

But don’t expect to recoup your expense when you sell the house. She says homeowners should invest because it will benefit them, not a potential future owner.

“My take on solar, I love it. I love the reasons for having solar panels,” Carlson says. “But there are implications for selling down the road. If you lease, a new buyer might not want to assume that responsibility.”

If the panels are paid off, know they don’t add marketable value to the home, she says.

Builder installs solar systems

“With regards to solar panels, unless the builder is installing them as part of their base package, I don’t see a benefit,” says Barry Willmarth, Willmarth Real Estate Services owner.

Some builders now make solar panels part of their package.

For example, at Buffalo Highlands, Lennar offers paired homes with leased rooftop solar systems.

In early January, Richmond American Homes announced it would provide solar options on new homes nationwide. The company has offered solar power systems to customers in California since 2012.

Richmond American had sold nearly 6,000 homes with solar panels in California and Colorado as of June 2021.

“We’re always looking for ways to reduce energy usage and waste and promote a healthy environment, and we have seen great success with solar power systems in California and Colorado. So, offering solar solutions in all regions in which we build was a natural next step,” says Andrew Harris, senior vice president of Richmond American Homes Corporation, in a news release.

Another option

If you don’t want to add solar panels or if your home doesn’t provide enough roof space to install them, you can consider subscribing to a community solar garden. The gardens are centralized solar panels that connect to electric utility systems. Users subscribe to get energy credits for their monthly bills.

For example, SunShare Community Solar in Denver offers consumers the chance to subscribe with no out-of-pocket costs. The solar credits you receive from your electric provider cover the SunShare subscription.


The news and editorial staffs of The Denver Post had no role in this post’s preparation.

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