There are so many Free Solar Leasing Panels Scam in the industry and I cannot wait to go through all of these scams.
I also have breaking news from Tesla in regards to what they are doing with solar panels for residential. How they’re eliminating some of these free solar leasing scams.
Are Free Solar Panels Really Free?
- 1 Are Free Solar Panels Really Free?
- 2 Free Solar Leasing Panels Scam
- 3 Free Solar Panel Scheme
- 4 The value of your house will go up if you have solar panels. Let’s just be real here!
- 5 Are Solar Panels Worth It?
What could be more American than spending no money and saving money and being green?
Well, having solar panels has been the epitome of exactly this for at least the last 10 years as companies like Sun Run and Vivint solar go knocking on your door closing on free solar leasing panel deals.
But there are some very important free solar leasing panels scam that you need to be aware of!
I been wanting to get all of this free solar leasing panels information out for years.
No one really sets the bar pretty darn low for how sleazy the solar industry can sometimes be. As with any good scam, it usually starts with something that involves zero money out of pocket and you simply are signing a contract.
But don’t worry, you have three days to cancel that contract, except nobody ever does.
Free Solar Leasing Panels Scam
As a result, we get into free solar leasing panels scam details that you usually don’t find out until it’s too late.
Solar companies will generally say we won’t put a lien against your property. In fact, here’s a quote from Vivint Solar.
To be clear, Vivint Solar does not, has not, will not and cannot ever jeopardize its customers home ownership.
Vivint solar does not take a lien on a customer’s home under its agreements.
And this is really just a bunch of bullshit language, because whether you call it a lien or you call it what it is.
UCC agreement gets recorded against the property that you own when you take out these solar agreements.
When you go to sell title companies will not let you sell the property until you’ve cleared up your lien like loans or other debts or these contracts that the solar companies record against your house.
So they accomplish the same thing as a lien.
They prevent you from selling the house without going through the terms of the contract.
So basically the solar companies do exactly the same thing.
They say they’re not going to do.
They say we won’t put a lien on your house yet.
They literally basically put a lien on your house
And that sets up the solar industry for being quite a bit slimy. But let’s get into the other free solar leasing panels scam.
Companies often times sell these leases or power purchase agreements under the premise that, oh, well, if you need to sell your house, don’t worry, we’ll just transfer it to the buyer.
Well, guess what?
I happen to be a real estate agent and I happen to have to deal with these crappy lease contracts and power purchase agreements all the time.
Let me just make this very clear.
Your buyer does not want to take your dumb contract for an improvement that was made to help you save money on energy.
Here’s a perfect example, two homeowners were living and working from home and had a spa there using about 250 dollars of power per month for their case.
Solar made sense. They would have saved money if they stayed there and kept using the panels.
The contracts made sense.
They don’t always have to be bad, even though, yes, I’m being a little bit negative towards them.
The reason, though, is when it came time to sell, they were under the impression that it would be easy to transfer to a buyer.
But now we get to millennial buyers that work outside the home and all of a sudden, they’re barely home.
Their electricity bill is only like 30 dollars a month.
They don’t want the contract and the buyers cancel the deal. This happens more often than you would think.
It sounds easy to say, oh, we’ll just transfer the panels to the buyers.
The problem is most buyers don’t understand contracts that previous sellers have entered into.
And bottom line is, anytime something gets complicated or abnormal, buyers don’t want it.
Buyers don’t want to inherit your crappy abnormal contracts
They want what’s normal. Keep in mind, the solar contracts are based on your usage, not necessarily the buyer’s usage.
Well, if you know the buyers don’t want the panels, no problem.
You could just prepay for the contract.
Well, don’t confuse prepaying the contract with buying the panels.
See, usually early in the contract, you’re not allowed to actually buy the panels.
You have to keep paying the lease or power purchase agreement like Vivint Solar or Sunrun.
And so what happens when they say as well, you can prepay the contract?
All they’re actually saying is all of the money that you’re supposed to pay us over the next 20 years with the annual increases that we’re going to be charging you and all of our future expectations of of credits and benefits that we’re going to get from having these solar panels.
If you want to prepay those 20 years of payments that we’re owed, you could do that right now.
But after those 20 years, we’re going to come pick up our panels, because even though you prepaid the contract, they’re still our panels.
In other words, a lot of sellers end up getting cornered into the question of do I want to sell the house and pay 20 thousand dollars to remove the solar panels?
Or do I just cancel the deal and try to find a different buyer who’s willing to take the panels, but then end up selling for a lower price most often?
If you decide to prepay the contract, don’t think you’re getting any of the tax credits that come along with buying panels either.
The solar company will say, well, you could just move the panels to another property.
But if you’re moving, you better be moving to a property that has equal or greater sun exposure.
Because if not, the solar company will just flat out deny your ability to move the panels to another property.
In another example, I had homeowners considering moving the panels, but they were moving to Washington, which happens to have a little bit less sun exposure than Southern Nevada.
Needless to say, they weren’t able to transfer the panels.
Solar companies will often times over size the panels that you actually need.
The argument is, well, hey, your usage will probably go up in time, right? You might want to add an electric car or keep that spa running a little longer.
So they’ll usually sell you more panels than you actually need when in reality it’s much, much easier to just take a smaller system.
And if you need more in the future, add panels at that time.
But signing up for a 20 year lease or a power purchase agreement with a larger system than you need eliminates a lot of the benefits of having solar in the first place.
The rule of thumb I use is if your power bill is more than two hundred dollars per month, you’d probably benefit from having solar.
Unfortunately, a lot of people’s power bills are less than 200 dollars per month and they’re not benefiting from having solar bring them into the lower tiers of power.
But installing more solar than you need is totally dumb.
And that’s where the free solar leasing panels scam comes in.
Free Solar Panel Scheme
A lot of solar companies will say, well, hey, if you generate more power than you need, you could sell it back to the grid.
You could sell it back to the utility company because you’re generating electricity now.
Well, that’s wonderful, except your paying usually around 12 cents per kilowatt hour for the power that you’re paying for from these solar panels.
And when you give those back to the utility company, they’re usually only paying you two to four cents. So you’re losing 8 to 10 cents per kilowatt hour.
That doesn’t make sense!!
It never makes sense to oversize your system.
In fact, you should never want to zero out your bill because the electricity from your local utility company is usually cheaper in the initial tiers than what your solar can produce.
Solar makes a lot of sense when you’re going from expensive tiers like 30, 40 cents a kilowatt hour down to your solar generation.
That makes a lot of sense.
But it’s frustrating because it just seems like you get screwed no matter which way you go.
When you lease a solar system or you do a power purchase agreement, you don’t get any of the environmental benefits or credits usually.
You are not going to get the big one, the 30 percent energy tax credit.
Pay for solar panels in cash to get the best pricing!
Now you get to write off 30 percent of that and basically the government gives me a big fat tax dollar credit.
When I go to file my taxes.
If I leased or did a power purchase agreement on the same sized system, usually I don’t get that 30 percent tax credit.
The company doing the solar lease or power purchase agreement benefits.
The solar companies that are leasing or doing power purchase agreements will maintain your system for the life of the contract folks.
The systems are designed to be maintenance free and when bits or pieces of them fail, they’re usually under extremely long manufacturer warranties anyway.
Like the micro inverters that have a 25 year warranty on them.
They’re designed to be maintenance free.
If they fail, the manufacturer should take care of it anyway.
So the whole maintenance included argument is pretty dumb.
I’m telling you, the solar companies, they’re not coming over to wash the dust off the top of your solar panels.
And quite frankly, you probably don’t have to do that anyway.
The bait and switch, which is basically look how great our customer service is when you’re interested in becoming a new customer.
And then they switch you on over to the existing customer side where you sit on the phone for hours on end and you really can’t get your questions answered.
The value of your house will go up if you have solar panels. Let’s just be real here!
If you’re leasing the panels or you’re doing a power purchase agreement, the value of your house will go down, usually by the cost it takes to prepay the contract or remove the panels.
So if you have a Vivint Solar contract and it costs 20 grand to repay that system, you can bet the value of your house is actually going down by about twenty thousand dollars.
Should we install solar panels?
I say only if you’re buying them. Do not do a lease.
Do not do a power purchase agreement.
A lot of homeowners plan to keep these solar panels forever.
And that’s why they justify putting solar panels on their house because they figure, well, if I live here for 10 years, they’re going to pay for themselves.
They’re going to start profiting me money. And that’s true.
But the problem is, when you move out and you put tenants into the property, if you don’t sell the property, which is what I recommend, I always recommend you rent out your properties.
The tenants aren’t going to pay you much more in rent if anything, just because you have solar panels.
It’s too complicated for the marketplace to understand.
Anytime something is too complicated, you won’t get your money’s worth for it.
No tenant is going to look at your house and say, well, yours is renting for twenty eight hundred dollars. Everybody else is renting for twenty six hundred dollars.
Oh, but yours has solar panels, so it’s worth the difference.
Tenants don’t do that math.
I know it sounds like they should, and I know there are a bunch of efficient market hypothesis people out there.
It don’t work in real estate. Okay.
The real estate market is not efficient.
Solar contracts like leases and power purchase agreements often times include payment escalator clauses that say your payment will go up about two point nine percent every single year to just keep up with inflation.
The problem is it’s not up to that number.
It’s always that number.
So it’s two point nine percent all the time.
And yet when we look at what inflation is now or last year, we look and go, whoa!
Inflation was like one point four to one point six percent.
Now it’s one point eight percent, two point nine.
That’s just more profit for the solar companies.
Now, let’s talk about Tesla
Well, Tesla once again has completely changed the game rather than having a complicated sales process.
Tesla has come out and made it very easy for you to buy or lease solar panels.
Now, you might be thinking, wait a minute, haven’t you just spent a long time talking about how much of a scam leases are? Yeah, I’m going to touch on that.
Don’t worry. If you were to buy, all you have to do is pick small, medium or large.
My opinion, if you’re going to buy panels, start smaller.
You can always add more.
And remember, my rule of thumb is don’t buy the panels unless your electricity bill right now is already over two hundred dollars.
If your energy costs are not more than 200 dollars per month, just don’t even consider solar.
At this point, my rule of thumb, if you do consider buying, remember that you get that 30 percent off when you file your taxes, you don’t get them right away.
So if you need a pay seven thousand five hundred for a small or 15K for medium or 22K for large, you have to pay for that now and then you’ll get 30 percent back later.
Now, when it comes to leasing, this is where Tesla is making me really giddy inside because guess what they just announced?
Tesla announced that you can lease the solar panels and cancel anytime!! They literally just eliminated so many of the scams of the solar industry.
They gave Vivint Solar and Sunrun the big middle finger and they will literally transform the industry with this cheap, inexpensive solar lease.
This is absolutely incredible. Love it!
Now they will charge fifteen hundred dollars if you cancel so that they can remove the solar panels.
But fifteen hundred dollars is a whole lot better than prepaying for the system.
And bottom line, and Tesla is transparent about this.
Fifteen hundred dollars period for installation and removal.
You’re probably losing money by sending a crew to install the panels and then remove them if you cancel and pay the fifteen hundred dollars.
So fifteen hundred dollars to me break even or loss for Tesla.
But very, very smart because it eliminates so much of the scam that goes along with the solar industry.
Now should you buy or lease the panels?
All this leasing is crap.
I highly recommend that you buy the panels!!
The reason is simple. If we quickly Google the amount of the medium sized solar panels that you’ll finance, minus the 30 percent tax credit that you’ll get, we’ll see that fifteen thousand one hundred sixty two dollars for the medium minus the 30 percent is about ten thousand six hundred dollars.
Let’s assume a 5 percent interest rate.
And say that you’ll pay them off over 8 years.
That means with principal and interest payments, you are paying one hundred thirty four dollars and you own the panels.
That means after this period of time the panels will be yours and they will generate free electricity for you until they die.
Probably in another 15 or 20 years.
After that, solar panels seem to have somewhere around a 25 to 35 year lifespan and then their efficiency starts declining.
Although some panels are still around after 40 to 50 years, it’s crazy.
Are Solar Panels Worth It?
But then if we jump back over to see what it costs to rent the medium sized solar panel system, we see it’s the same almost one hundred thirty dollars.
So in my opinion, if you can figure out a way to pay for the panels and take that 30 percent tax credit, you will end up having panels paid for and be in a much better situation in the long run and actually have panels that increase the value of your property by paying for these solar panels and not doing the same as cash kind of financing crap.
You will actually benefit from having solar panels, but again, only if your electricity bill is more than $200 dollars per month right now.
So stay away from all of the free solar leasing panels scam that we just talked about. Don’t get screwed on solar.
I almost forgot to mention you should buy Tesla stock? In my opinion, absolutely.
This is a massive game changer to the solar industry and the amount of profits that are available in solar that are now going to shift from these free solar leasing panel scam companies to Tesla.
In my opinion, will be massive. I think this is a brilliant move by Tesla.
I’m very impressed and very excited.
And it’s mostly based on my experience with the solar industry that I feel like most people don’t have the information about free solar leasing panels scam.
Free Solar Leasing Panels Scam
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Bob and Diana
Free Solar Leasing Panels Scam
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Great information about how the leasing solar industry works. Would recommend to read this article before leasing solar.