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Solar Companies in California – Difference Between Owning and Leasing


Solar Company Los Angeles EquiSolarOwning a home or business comes with many difficult decisions. Determining whether to install solar panels on your property is only the beginning – you also have to decide if you’re going to lease or buy them. This choice isn’t always clearcut, so it requires a bit of research and consideration. It’s definitely something you don’t want to rush into without complete understanding. So before you sign a leasing contract with a solar company in Los Angeles, read this quick overview.


Leasing vs Owning Solar


You’ll come across quite a few solar companies that will try and sell you on the idea of leasing their solar panels. This is because it benefits them more than it benefits you. When customers lease solar panels, they pay the solar companies forever, or until they return the system. You will never own your solar panels, which means you will always have a bill.


Owning solar panels can be achieved by either purchasing outright or financing the system. Either way, you are investing in your financial future. The great thing about financing is that there’s a maturity date – once you finish paying them off, they’re yours forever.


The Benefits of Owning Solar Panels


There are many benefits associated with purchasing solar panels. Besides the obvious – you getting to own your system and reap the savings forever – you also get other perks. For one, you can get a 30 percent tax cut when you install solar panels that you have purchased. This isn’t available when you lease. So if you purchased the solar panels from a company in Los Angeles for $20,000, you can get a tax credit of $6,000. This can be useful for offsetting whatever money you owe to the IRS at the end of the year.


If you’ve shopped around and found the best solar panels for your home or business, but don’t have the cash to pay them off upfront, you can find solar companies that offer financing. If your credit is good, you can get deals like $0 down and 0% APR for five years. If you’re able to pay off the system within those five years, then you save even more. There are also contracts that don’t penalize you if you pay off your loan quicker.


Why You Should Reconsider Leasing Solar Panels


The first thing you should understand is that installing solar panels on a property is a long-term commitment, whether you decide to lease or buy them. With that said, leasing solar panels over the course of 20 years is throwing money down the drain. By this time, you could have owned your solar panels and been reaping even more savings.


Think of solar panels like a 401K – you invest in it while you’re young and able, so that by the time you retire, you can enjoy your investment. Keep in mind that during your working years, you spend less time at home, which means less energy being consumed. Once you retire, you will be home more often, which will spike up your energy bill. If you already invested in a solar panel system and paid it off, you won’t have to worry about this, especially if it offsets 100 percent of your utility bill.


Things to Do Before You Buy Solar


Once you decide to contact a solar company in Los Angeles, there are some things you need to do, such as:


    • Determine how much energy you want to offset
    • Calculate how many solar panels you will need
    • Identify whether or not you can afford your goal
    • Decide if you should start off with fewer solar panels, then work your way up


Don’t fret if you can’t reach your goals right away. Becoming energy sufficient is a long-term plan, so develop a strategy that will allow you to eventually reach your goals. And even more important – find a solar company that will help you do so.

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Before You Lease Solar Panels – Study the Solar Facts

Solar Company Installation

You’ve made the decision to purchase solar panels for your home or business – whether it’s to save the planet, lower your electricity costs or eliminate them all together. The idea of installing solar panels is a great one for many reasons, but how you go about it will determine whether it’s an investment worth pursuing.

There are many different decisions that have to be made during the planning phase of your solar panel integration. Besides going over the cost for the solar installation, you have to determine whether you will lease or purchase solar panels outright. If you’re leaning toward leasing then continue reading.


You Lose Money When You Lease Solar


Most people consider solar panels because it appeals to their financial senses. The idea of lowering one utility bill is enough to get most people on board. However, they fail to fully assess the implications associated with leasing solar panels. Simply put, leasing is not an investment. Installing solar panels that are leased is like throwing away money. You will never own them, so it’s just another bill you will have to pay forever or until you return them.


Prepare for Your Property Value to Decrease


Another important thing you should know is that when installing leased solar panels, it will drive your home value into the ground. Sure, leasing companies will boast about solar leases increasing home value, but this isn’t necessarily true. Some home buyers will be interested in the idea of taking over the lease of solar panels, especially if it means reduced electric bills. However, you have to consider that they will have to be approved by the solar panel company that’s leasing it. This can make selling the property rather daunting.


Future Electricity Costs Are in the Air


The only way leasing solar panels would allow you to save money is if your lease payments continue to fall below your utility bill savings. While this may be true today, the future is uncertain – some experts believe that future energy costs will rise 5 percent annually, while others predict that electricity costs will slightly decrease over the next ten years (because of natural gas prices).

Why Property Owners Choose to Purchase Solar Panels

There are a number of reasons why property owners are opting to purchase solar panels versus installing leased ones:

  • Once you pay it off, it’s yours
  • It can be financed (as low as 0% down at Equisolar)
  • The cost savings increases substantially once paid off


Whatever you decide to do, make sure you choose a solar panel company in Los Angeles that is trustworthy. And remember – solar panels are the wave of the future!

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