Summer is going strong – the sun is burning, the beaches are full, and curb appeal has a new factor as 2019 reaches its midpoint. It’s less about floral patterns, now, and more about the paneling. Solar paneling, to be specific, and other forms of renewable energy.
This fresh selling-point is not entirely new. As we know them today, solar panels with silicon have been around since the mid 1950s. The first “solar residence” known as Solar One was constructed in 1973 in Delaware, and their use for modern culture and life have been taking off ever since. Green technology has become more and more popular, and ‘lowering your carbon footprint’ has taken off as a selling point. Having solar panels on your property can now work for you, in more ways than one.
In 2019, the 30% Tax Credit remains. Through 2021, you can have a major discount on the cost of your new solar panels. In 2020, the percentage drops from 30% to 26% and continues down in that fashion through 2022. As the law states, as long as the solar panels are constructed, you can get the tax break. It doesn’t even need to be on right now, as long as it is operational by December. This tax break can mean impressive savings for property owners.
While there is the initial cost of buying solar panels and installing them, the savings of renewable energies is no joke. If you’re paying for your residents’ utilities, the green energy savings go to you, and that can make your bottom-line look great! If you’re not paying for their utilities, the attraction of lowered cost of living is a good way to drive rental applicants to your property. The lower carbon emissions have an even better pull. Tenants who are aware of their environmental impact, careful and conscientious tenants, are attracted to places like this. While there are no tenants occupying the residence, the lowered cost of the vacant space is a good way to reduce your costs as well.
Solar energy can work for you on your properties, but how can you sell that? As renters become more focused on renewable energy and the environment, having solar panels can be a major point in your favor. Even if you do include utilities, the lowered carbon footprint is a plus in many people’s books.
If you don’t include utilities in your rent, you can point out to potential residents that by living at your rental property, they can have reduced electric bills. that the more ‘developed’ a nation is, the more aware they are of climate change, leading to 90% of North Americans understanding climate change. Young adults are more likely to worry about it than older renters, with only 60% of those over sixty being concerned with the topic compared to 73% of younger adults.
As more young people look for their new home, instead of becoming lost in the mass of properties they may look at, you have the added bonus of energy savings and an environmentally friendly home that is welcoming the Green Movement. Maybe the resident wasn’t even looking to lower their carbon emissions, but it’s a plus that few landlords have and makes your rental property special and unique.
Raising Rent - Or Increasing Profits!
If you’re thinking of adding solar panels to a home that’s already rented out, you could possibly think of raising your rent. Depending on your state and local laws, you can justify raising the rent after installing solar panels at the end of a lease or amidst a vacancy. This allows you to capitalize on your new curb appeal or reduce your utilities cost (if paying). With a new tenant’s ability to help the environment, their lowered utility bill than previous homes, and your cost of installation and maintenance of solar power, you can justify why their rent may be higher than a home without solar power.
Solar Panels may not be the prettiest thing in the world, but they can be pretty in your pocketbook.
What's your opinion on solar energy?
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