Owning vs Leasing

E2 Solar does not offer a lease or PPA (power purchase agreement) option for solar installations. Solar leasing companies like SunRun and SolarCity are massive corporations that use the tax benefits of owning a solar system to create a tax shelter for parent companies, banks, and investors. Leasing programs claim to be in the best interest of homeowners, but actually retain the vast majority of financial and long-term benefits for the leasing company.

The following are just a few reasons that we firmly believe that owning a system outright is in the best interest of most homeowners in Oregon:

  1. Increase Home Value. Owning a solar system increases a home’s value—leasing does not. We believe that an investment in solar should create a valuable asset for the homeowner. Recent reports commissioned by the U.S. Department of Energy show that installing a solar system substantially increases home value, often by more than the cost of the system itself! If a solar system is leased, the equipment belongs to a 3rd-party corporation and will add no appraisable home value.

  2. Pay Only Once. If you lease a solar system and someday decide that you want to own it, you would have to pay the leasing company again to buy the system at an unknown future amount know as “fair market value”.  At the end of the lease term homeowners are given the choice to
    • Extend the lease contract at an unknown future price
    • Pay for the system for an unknown future price, or
    • Allow the leasing company to remove the system with no obligation to restore the roof to its original condition.

  3. No Constraints. If you were under a lease agreement and decided to sell your home some time in the next 20 years (a typical contract term), any potential buyer would have to agree to take over the lease contract and have a credit score good enough to qualify, or you would have to break your contract with the leasing company and/or purchase the system.

  4. No Changing Owner. Leasing companies reserve the right to sell all solar equipment to another party at any time without a homeowners consent. Should the system be an asset that the leasing company wishes to sell at some point due to bankruptcy or restructuring, they maintain that right.

  5. Retain Future Benefits. If you lease your solar system and a Renewable Energy Credit (REC) market or feed-in-tariff is created, the leasing company would receive all payments and environmental benefits generated by the system.

Solar is a proven, maintenance-free technology that will provide decades of free, clean, and reliable energy. When upfront cash is a challenge, financing options are available that allow a homeowner to own a system outright without the risk, disadvantages, and long-term constraints that come with a solar lease agreement.