When selling any home, you want to make sure you get the best value possible. The more money you get, the more you have for the next stage of your life; whether this is all going into new property or perhaps some is going into a savings account. When selling a home with owned solar panels and systems, this becomes even more important.
In recent years, as solar systems have become more popular, one of the most common questions we’ve received is ‘how do we ensure our solar system has been considered in the valuation?’ and this is a fair question. After investing enough money to own the solar panels, you want this to be recognized when selling. Luckily, this has been considered and there are steps you can take.
The Role of the Listing Agent
When trying to get the highest dollar value for your property, your listing agent is going to play an important role. Firstly, they will be present while the appraisal takes place which means they can point out the important areas of the home and draw attention to the owned solar system. After this, they’ll be in place to answer any questions and provide further information. However, they also have another important role.
With the very best listing agents, they will have a custom addendum in their contracts which will require every potential lender to hire a green-certified appraiser. Why is this important? Because they specialize in solar panels and solar equipment so will be able to provide an honest and impartial view of the home in this regard. Rather than having an appraiser that doesn’t have a full understanding of solar equipment and how it can affect the value of the home, you’ll have the best professionals on the case.
In addition to this, there’s another benefit of having such an addendum; these green-certified appraisers are also trained in valuing homes with all energy-efficiency upgrades. As well as solar panels, they’ll recognize energy-efficient appliances (such as fridges and ovens), programmable thermostats, insulation in the loft, seals on the windows and doors, improved water systems, energy efficient lighting, improved air conditioning, and even minor improvements elsewhere.
Suddenly, during the appraisal for your home, the value will be a true reflection of the property because every single efficiency improvement you’ve made will be considered by an expert. As well as understanding the improvements, these experts will also have an idea on what impact the changes have on utility bills. If the new buyers are going to benefit from huge savings on utility bills, this needs to be reflected in the price and these appraisers will have a greater understanding than most.
When selling a home with its own solar, the best advice we can offer is to provide more information than expected. If you’re able to provide the original purchasing agreement, spec sheets, and warranty cards, this will only benefit the selling price. Additionally, you can compile utility bills from the past couple of years and these can be used to calculate potential savings for new owners, the more information available for all parties, the better understanding the appraiser will have of the property – this removes the likelihood of errors.
When selling a home with owned solar, it’s all about trying to get the highest dollar value and this comes with specialized appraisers and high-quality listing agents!