The summer is right around the corner.  This is the time of the year when homeowners consider adding solar panels to their property.  Solar panels will eventually pay for themselves in the form of reduced utility bills.  However, solar panels are also a prudent investment as they will increase the value of your home. 



The Value Solar Panels add to Your Home

Install solar panels at your home and your property value will immediately increase.  Solar panels reduce energy bills, saving the homeowner money each month.  Furthermore, the fact that the cost and hassle of installing solar panels is out of the way will attract that many more bids once the home is on the market.  The question begs: exactly how much value do solar panels add to homes?  The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory performed an analysis of home sale data across eight states across a decade.  The results of the study show there is a significant correlation between the addition of solar panels and elevated home values. 


Though there is some variation in terms of the increase in home price based on region, data shows the average system of solar panels increases the value of the typical home by $12,700.  However, if you live in California or another sunny state, solar panels will enhance the value of your property that much more.  The Berkeley Lab study shows property values increased by $160,000 in the state of California after the addition of solar panels.  It must be noted that states like California have a comparably high value increase based on watts, the cost of installation is that much more in the golden state.





What About Solar Panel Depreciation?

Though it is true solar panels depreciate in value just like nearly everything else, this does not mean they will prove worthless in a few years or less.  Solar panels usually pay for themselves right off the bat as they elevate the home price immediately after installation.  However, the value of solar systems depreciates quicker than that of solar system efficiency.  Even though your solar panels will gradually decrease in value, they will still reduce the home’s energy bills even after years or decades pass.  This is the true value of solar panels.



Factors That Influence Solar Panel Value

Consider the size of potential solar systems before making the plunge.  In general, small solar systems enhance home value more per watt than especially large systems.  The bottom line is people are willing to pay more for a property that has a solar system even if it is fairly small.  The point is a home with solar panels is capable of converting the sun’s power into energy so it adds significant value. 


It is imperative you consider the aesthetic of your home before committing to solar panels of a certain type or size.  If your roof is angled toward the street, the addition of several massive solar panels has the potential to reduce your home’s value.  Consider how the solar panels will look once installed on your roof, determine if panels of another size might provide a better aesthetic and proceed accordingly.  Find the right balance between solar panel size, optics and functionality and you will maximize the value of your property.