How Installing Solar Panels can Increase the Value of your Home

Raise Your Home’s Value

Here in Canada, we don’t quite have enough history yet to prove that adding solar will in fact increase the value of your home. However, in the U.S where solar has been around longer than Canada, the evidence suggests that having a solar system could very well increase your property’s value.

In April 2011 the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory compared sales of California homes with and without rooftop solar over a span of 8.5 years. Their study found that solar homes did indeed sell for a premium. For a typical 3.1-kilowatt system, the Berkeley study calculated a $17,000 increase in the sale price of a home. For a larger 5-kilowatt system, the increase was $27,000.

In July 2011, the National Bureau of Economic Research published a study of sale prices of solar homes in California’s San Diego and Sacramento counties. This study found that solar panels added an average of 3.5 percent to the resale value of a home. This lines up with the previous study, showing an average US$19,000 increase in value for a US$500,000 home with a 5- kilowatt solar system. Outside of California, the trend also seems to hold true:

In 2013, the Colorado Energy Office published a report on sales of 30 solar homes in and around Denver with home values ranging from $200,000 to $680,000.

The homes all sold between January 2011 and May 2013.

The solar panels added between US$1,400 and US$2,600 per kilowatt to the value of the home – and shortened the time those houses spent on the market. Taking the average of $2,000 per kilowatt, and an average of 4.25 kilowatts per system, the average solar house sold for $8,500 more than a similar non-solar home. Every way you look at it solar makes sense!

We looked hard, but good reliable information does not yet exist for the Canadian market. Stay tuned!