Saturday, February 23, 2013

San Jose #2 for Solar "Leases" in 2012

A business model for the solar energy industry that is gaining in popularity is to lease solar to people that are interested in a photo-voltaic system for their homes, but do not want to pay upfront to buy the whole system. The buyers recognizes instant savings on their electric bill and often times does not have to pay anything out of pocket.

Well it turns out that San Jose has made it to number 2 on the list of cities in California with the largest number of leased solar roofs. I hope to see even more adoption of green technology in the future as the city strives to maintain its pole position in green-tech.


1.) San Diego
2.) San Jose
3.) Bakersfield
4.) Los Angeles
5.) Fresno
6.) San Francisco
7.) Corona
8.) Murrieta
9.) Clovis
10.) Temecula

Source: SVBJ



  1. Solar leasing or solar fleecing ? You decide. The solar leasing companies want your roof so that they can take your 30% federal tax credit worth thousands of dollars. They will also take any and all other financial incentives such as cash rebates and REC credits. In exchange you'll only get a 10 to 15% reduction in your electric bill after you factor in the lease payments and you'll be stuck with 20 years’ worth of lease payments on forever ageing solar equipment that you can't sell because it won't belong to you. In fact after making 20 years’ worth of lease payments, if you want to keep the system, you'll have to buy it from the leasing company at fair market value. And good luck ever selling your home with a lease attached to it. What home buyer will want to assume your lease payment on used equipment when they can buy a brand new, state of the art system for as little as 1/3 the cost of your lease payments. Today you can buy a complete, name brand, grid tie solar system for only $1.66 a watt. And that's before any incentives. Instead of a solar lease why not get an FHA $0 down solar loan so you can keep the 30% federal tax credit and all the other financial incentives for a much better return on your investment. Oh, and that discount that the leasing company is offering you, who do you think is paying for that in the end? Right, how generous of you.

  2. I did not realize the FHA had $0 down solar loans, that seems like the way to go.