The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
How Solar Panels Can Boost Your Home's Value by Nearly $6,000
Plenty of additions can add to a home's market value, and a roof with solar panels is no exception.
The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's (LBNL) Electricity Markets and Policy Group released a report with the numbers to prove it, too. According to LBNL, home values can increase by $5,911 for each kilowatt (kW) of solar energy generated by a rooftop system.
Most California homes can produce 2 to 5 KW, so, clearly, bigger is better when it comes to home premiums and energy production. The study also indicates that buyers are gravitating to solar homes with newer systems.
"The take-away here is the market is showing that [photovoltaic] PV is valued by home buyers," LBNL staff research associate Ben Hoen told the San Francisco Chronicle. "There could be a green cachet for the PV system that would be over and above the expected price."
The study looked at 1,894 California homes with solar roofs, compared with more than 70,000 non-solar homes sold in the state from 2000 to 2009.
The report found that the added value slides with each passing year. Premiums decrease by about 9 percent per year, while electricity generation drops by about 1 percent per year.
"They might be perceived as older technology, even if they're still producing electricity at the expected rate," Hoen said. "An individual home is going to have its own, individual premium for PV."
Still, adding a solar panel pays for itself in the way of energy savings and can be a nice complement to renovations and other factors to add to a home's value. That will become even more evident as more real estate appraisers figure out the best ways to assign value to solar systems.
"Valuing homes with green technologies of various kinds is becoming more common," he said. "It's not a process that happens overnight, but it is happening."
LBNL plans on updating the study soon and looking at other states, too. Prices have dropped dramatically since the final year of the data used for the study. In California alone, prices dropped from $10.60 per watt in 2009 to $5.67 per watt this year, according to the state's Go Solar website.
Nationwide, the average cost is $4.99 per watt and expected to decrease each year.
Visit EcoWatch’s RENEWABLES page for more related news on this topic.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
Millions of solar panels clustered together to form an island could convert carbon dioxide in seawater into methanol, which can fuel airplanes and trucks, according to new research from Norway and Switzerland and published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal, PNAS, as NBC News reported. The floating islands could drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions and dependence on fossil fuels.
More than 40 percent of insects could go extinct globally in the next few decades. So why did the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) last week ok the 'emergency' use of the bee-killing pesticide sulfoxaflor on 13.9 million acres?
EcoWatch teamed up with Center for Biological Diversity via EcoWatch Live on Facebook to find out why. Environmental Health Director and Senior Attorney Lori Ann Burd explained how there is a loophole in the The Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act under section 18, "that allows for entities and states to request emergency exemptions to spraying pesticides where they otherwise wouldn't be allowed to spray."
By Sharon Kelly
On Monday, the Wall Street Journal featured a profile of Scott Sheffield, CEO of Pioneer Natural Resources, whose company is known among investors for its emphasis on drawing oil and gas from the Permian basin in Texas using horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.
By Craig K. Chandler
The federal government has available to it, should it choose to use them, a wide range of potential climate change management tools, going well beyond the traditional pollution control regulatory options. And, in some cases (not all), without new legislative authorization.
By Dan Gray
Processed foods, in their many delicious forms, are an American favorite.
But new research shows that despite increasing evidence on just how unhealthy processed foods are, Americans have continued to eat the products at the same rate.