​What do I need to consider when buying a house with solar panels?

Taking care of the environment by reducing our reliance on fossil fuels has been a major focus in recent years. If you’re looking to buy a house, you may be looking for a property with a good energy efficiency rating. There may also be a chance that you find a house with solar panels.

When purchasing a house with solar panels on the roof, you should take a few important points into consideration:

  1. The solar panels may not be owned by the seller. It is not uncommon for installation companies to rent roof space for the fitting of solar panels. Should this be the case, it is unlikely you will be able to remove them until the end of the lease. Such an agreement would usually last for 25 years.
  2. Solar panels may affect the value of the property. If you are purchasing with a mortgage, you should ask your mortgage broker to ensure your lender is made aware of the existence of the solar panels at an early stage. You should also ask your own surveyor to confirm whether the solar panels will affect the value of the property.
  3. Many mortgage lenders have specific requirements concerning the terms of a solar panel lease. If any amendments are required, there may be delays and you may incur additional charges for the legal work involved.
  4. Some people have solar heaters installed on their roof. Whilst they may look like solar panels, they do not generate any electricity for the property and are simply used to heat water.
  5. If you will become the owner of the solar panels following your purchase of the property you may be entitled to payment of the Feed in Tariff for any unused solar power which is transferred into the National Grid. You should discuss the payment of the Feed in Tariff with your chosen electricity supplier for the property.

Emsleys Solicitors have many years’ experience in dealing with solar panels, including agreements for existing solar panels to be kept on the roof of a property. If you are considering buying or selling a property with solar panels, please call 0113 264 4414 or email conveyancing@emsleys.co.uk for a no obligation free discussion with one of our property experts.

Mark Laird

Written by

Mark Laird

Conveyancing

Mark worked as a paralegal for five years before qualifying as a Chartered Legal Executive in 2007. Since then he has specialised in all aspects of residential conveyancing.

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