Making your house easier to sell, and potentially even worth more, is a common sales pitch from solar companies these days. Unfortunately, current lending guidelines mean that adding solar panels will likely have the opposite effect.
FHA loans make buying a home with solar panels very difficult, if not impossible. HUD requires that any lease for solar panels must be able to be transferred to another person without the consent of a third party. However, virtually all solar leases have transfer limitations in them, requiring that the new borrower be subject to credit standards. This makes an FHA loan impossible.
Fannie Mae has their own set of limitations. Among other things, they require that upon foreclosure, the lease must be able to be terminated, and the equipment removed. This is generally not allowable in the solar leases currently.
These issues can create problems for homeowner’s trying to sell a house with leased solar panels. Therefore, if you think that selling your house may be an option for you in the near future, you should do your research prior to, and maybe even rethink your decision to install leased solar panels. If you insist on adding solar panels to your home, doing so without utilizing a lease form the solar company is recommended.
If you have questions regarding solar panels and solar panel leases, please contact one of our mortgage professionals.