Will Solar Panels Increase Property Values in North Carolina?

North Carolina Real Estate Broker Eric Andrews discusses the possibility of solar panels and Tesla Solar Roofs on homes in North Carolina and their affect on a home’s pricing.

Speaker 1:           Will Tesla’s solar panels, solar roofs, I think they call them solar links, improve a house’s value?

Speaker 2:           So these aren’t your normal solar panels. I guess they’re replacing the entire roof or whatever, and they can be what $30,000.00, $40,000.00? Yeah, I don’t know. I don’t know. We certainly don’t have enough data to prove whether or not they’ll increase the value. There are a lot of people that like that kind of stuff. And so we have eco builders or eco builders, we have eco agents. In Chatham County, we have people that are doing a lot of different things. They’re doing the solar panels on the roof, they’re doing hydrothermal HVAC, like ground systems to heat and cool their homes. We have people doing sealed crawl spaces, an encapsulated crawl space which definitely helps as far as heat and power. And then we have these solar panels. So tesla has come up with this system where your entire house is covered with these solar panels. I guess the average power bill in Chatham right now on an average sized home is about 250 bucks a month. I probably pay almost double that, but I’m in an old farm house. So I would really, really like this. And I’m in the middle of a field, so hopefully solar would be good.

I mean, solar’s not working on a day like today, cloudy day like today, but I guess on a good, sunny day. I think it’s a great. If this technology keeps on growing and getting better and that can be a normal part of home construction and get these power companies out of our pocketbook, I would certainly rather pay for a power system that was just me and try and get off the grid as much as possible.

I will tell you that it’s more of an altruistic like, “I’m going to do my part to save humanity and save the climate.” I’ve found in the past that not all these things pay for themselves. So when we have a client that has a house that is eco-friendly, we certainly get a higher price than we would normal construction, but the seller will say, “Oh my gosh, I have an extra 80,000.” And we’re like, “Okay, well we can get you 50,000 more.” Or, “Oh, I have an extra 120.” And we’re like, “Okay, we can get yo 80 more.” People are willing to pay a premium, but they’re not quite willing to pay every penny that you have in it.

One of the things that we want to look at with the Tesla roofs is our, what’s your rate of recapture? So, sometimes in the past, we’ve had tax incentives. So if there’s some kind of tax incentive that helps you with your recapture rate. But if you have a $40,000 system and it’s saving you $250 a month, well that’s going to be five or six years before you’re paying yourself back. You want to make sure for sure those things last more than five or six years. We’ve had some problems with some solar things in the past or a lot of people in Chatham County have done the solar panels for hot water and those are great until they leak, and they do leak over time or whatever.

So I don’t know enough about it to talk about it intelligently, but I’m happy that that technology is available and I’d be excited to see it in Chatham.