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Is SolarCity's lease a good deal?

asked 2015-01-16 12:27:51 -0500

Tyler gravatar image

updated 2015-01-24 11:01:47 -0500

SolarCity has offered me a lease program for my house in southern California. What's their reputation? Can I trust them? What should I look out for?

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answered 2015-01-22 12:17:41 -0500

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updated 2015-01-22 12:17:41 -0500

Anytime you are leasing something especially solar, you should be aware of the actual incentives you are giving up as well as exact details at lease end Fair market value of the system may suprise you how much it will be with rising utility costs. Selling a home with a lease is also a major issue as buyer must sign it. Removing a system for free sounds nice but the roof will not be able to be patched and would have to be replaced vd what a lease will cover. The state incentive programs and the right installer, generally best to go local, can show you how to own it very easy. Loans are available for solar and loan payments will be less then electric bill..

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answered 2016-03-08 18:16:50 -0500

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updated 2016-03-08 18:16:50 -0500

elizabethaloe gravatar image

I have to disagree with the above. I have a lease from SolarCity and so far its been great. I'm saving $30 a month and they warranty everything including the roof. I went with the lease because I want to revisit in 20 years and decide then if I want to continue or upgrade. They promise in the contract that if I take the system off, the roof goes back to what it looked like before. The bigger companies are actually best sometimes because they guarantee the work. SolarCity is really big on customer service and will do everything in house so there isn't any outsourcing which I wanted. I want to know that when I call about something, I get a local voice (my consultant) or someone in the states. I also didn't pay a dime out of my own pocket to move to solar. I wanted to lease v. Own because I don't have enough tax liability for the tax credit to work so I wouldn't have gotten it back. So be careful of that if you plan to buy it for the tax credit. If you want to save money right away and stay at the same rate per KW, the lease is a great option. I've been really happy with SolarCity and keep referring people (I make $$, too) and my friends and family have been happy too.

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answered 2016-04-10 16:09:52 -0500

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updated 2016-04-10 16:09:52 -0500

If the question is strictly - is their lease a good deal you should compare it to other leases. The apples to apples approach works best. If you want the apples to oranges comparison - it gets somewhat trickier. In the long run you do better by owning the system and taking all the benefits for yourself - making the up front investment will pay off. However, if you are not looking to stay in your home, again this varies, for more than 5 or 10 years a lease is a good deal. Your savings begin day 1 with no out of pocket expense. Without a recouping of investment you save right out of the gate. Things in a lease to compare are price per kWh, length of lease, who is responsible for damage, what happens at the end of the lease, and how easy is it to transfer the lease. 9 out 10 residential sales are leases so it is very popular. It really boils down to what you have to invest and how long you anticipate staying in your home.

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Asked: 2015-01-16 12:27:51 -0500

Seen: 4,925 times

Last updated: Jun 20 '16