Jump to content
Loco

Solar Panels for the house

Recommended Posts

1 hour ago, Nice Guy Eddie said:

One of the biggest selling points of a renewable energy purchase is the tax credit. Since the buyer of a house, already with solar panels, doesn’t get the credit, value is much much lower to them. Perhaps 0. If solar is important to me as a buyer, I might prefer to add solar to a house without them. That way I get the tax credit and full choice of what I want.

if you roll the cost of solar panels into a refi, you basically just lowered your equity and you’re slowly going to get it back over the next 10-20 years at best case. I’m really not seeing that much of an upside financially speaking. You own less of your house now and your solar panels are giving you $20 per month.  If the numbers work out.

and appraisals only mean so much. I’ve rarely heard of an appraisal not coming in what is wanted, within reason.  Be happy with your purchase but stop the crap that it’s a good financial deal.

I'm not selling it to anyone else. I'm not saying it is the best investment in the world. I'm saying, in my situation, the numbers workout on the positive side of the ledger. And that is all I personally need to make it work since I do have a concern for environment. That is it. Why do you care so much about how I view my financial situation? I understand everything you said. I understand that it reduces equity in the house. I get how that works. I'm pretty well educated amigo. 

(1) I totally get that it doesn't work that well without the tax credit. But, right now, the tax credit exists. So It goes into the calculus. 

(2) I completely understand that a buyer isn't going to increase his offer by the full price of the solar system. Why would he if he could build it himself for less by taking advantage of the tax credit? I expect that the absolute highest amount it could add to the value of a property would be the after tax-credit cost. And I also expect that it doesn't add that much. 

(3) The solar panels aren't giving me $20 a month. They are giving me $110 a month. That $90 doesn't disappear. It goes to pay off a loan, increasing my equity in the house. What I do get is an additional $20 dollars in positive cash flow. 

(4) Even if the solar panels add $0 to the value of the house, they still aren't necessarily a bad deal IF you plan on keeping the property for an extended period of time. Some math:

Cost after tax credit/rebate = 13k, all financed. 

Loan = $90 per month, 15 year term.  

Production = $110 per month or $1,320 per year. 

Average cash savings during loan term = 110-90 = $20 per month or $240 per year

Year 0

House Equity = -13k

Year 1

Net House Equity = -12.3k ($700 in payments going to principal)

All Time Additional Savings = $240 ($20 in additional production per month x 12)

Total position = -12K

Year 2

Net House Equity = -11.6k ($700 in payments going to principal)

All Time Additional Savings = $480

Total position = -11.1K 

Year 5

Net House Equity = -9.3k 

All Time Additional Savings = $1200

Total position = -8.1k

Year 10

Net House Equity = -5k 

All Time Additional Savings = $2400

Total position = -2.6k

Year 15

Net House Equity = -0k

All Time Additional Savings = $3600

Total position = +3600

 

This is damn conservative too. It has a 0 dollar increase in value of house, no yearly increase in energy cost per Kwh, and doesn't account for investing the additional savings from the production. And, all of that is within the warranty period. And, for the entire period the only affect on my monthly budget is a $20 decrease with no out of pocket outlay by me. Seriously, why should I be unhappy, financially, with this at all?

Edited by Dahobbs

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just put in my order for panels and two powerwalls today.  Not 30 minutes after... boom, first power outage in my neighborhood in over two years.   

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, troph said:

If I said you can have solar for free would you take it?

Isn’t that what every solar salesperson says?

Out of curiosity, what energy providers are providing good credits these days? I Thought green mountain was one of better options in Houston.

Edited by Nice Guy Eddie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Spoiler
18 hours ago, Dahobbs said:

I'm not selling it to anyone else. I'm not saying it is the best investment in the world. I'm saying, in my situation, the numbers workout on the positive side of the ledger. And that is all I personally need to make it work since I do have a concern for environment. That is it. Why do you care so much about how I view my financial situation? I understand everything you said. I understand that it reduces equity in the house. I get how that works. I'm pretty well educated amigo. 

(1) I totally get that it doesn't work that well without the tax credit. But, right now, the tax credit exists. So It goes into the calculus. 

(2) I completely understand that a buyer isn't going to increase his offer by the full price of the solar system. Why would he if he could build it himself for less by taking advantage of the tax credit? I expect that the absolute highest amount it could add to the value of a property would be the after tax-credit cost. And I also expect that it doesn't add that much. 

(3) The solar panels aren't giving me $20 a month. They are giving me $110 a month. That $90 doesn't disappear. It goes to pay off a loan, increasing my equity in the house. What I do get is an additional $20 dollars in positive cash flow. 

(4) Even if the solar panels add $0 to the value of the house, they still aren't necessarily a bad deal IF you plan on keeping the property for an extended period of time. Some math:

Cost after tax credit/rebate = 13k, all financed. 

Loan = $90 per month, 15 year term.  

Production = $110 per month or $1,320 per year. 

Average cash savings during loan term = 110-90 = $20 per month or $240 per year

Year 0

House Equity = -13k

Year 1

Net House Equity = -12.3k ($700 in payments going to principal)

All Time Additional Savings = $240 ($20 in additional production per month x 12)

Total position = -12K

Year 2

Net House Equity = -11.6k ($700 in payments going to principal)

All Time Additional Savings = $480

Total position = -11.1K 

Year 5

Net House Equity = -9.3k 

All Time Additional Savings = $1200

Total position = -8.1k

Year 10

Net House Equity = -5k 

All Time Additional Savings = $2400

Total position = -2.6k

Year 15

Net House Equity = -0k

All Time Additional Savings = $3600

Total position = +3600

 

This is damn conservative too. It has a 0 dollar increase in value of house, no yearly increase in energy cost per Kwh, and doesn't account for investing the additional savings from the production. And, all of that is within the warranty period. And, for the entire period the only affect on my monthly budget is a $20 decrease with no out of pocket outlay by me. Seriously, why should I be unhappy, financially, with this at all?

 

This all makes sense to me. My only concern was as some noted above potential repairs or maintenance/impact to the roof. Seems like you haven't had issues at least yet. 

Dumb question alert - so you can "bank" energy created by the solar system you have with batteries etc.?  I thought most of these systems generally would not benefit if the power grid goes down or you lose access to power from the Utility/bad weather etc.  Is that not accurate, or did your system just include the storage aspect?  One of the drivers for me was the ability to have a day or two of power in event of hurricane etc without going the generator route.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, Enchubben said:
  Reveal hidden contents

 

This all makes sense to me. My only concern was as some noted above potential repairs or maintenance/impact to the roof. Seems like you haven't had issues at least yet. 

Dumb question alert - so you can "bank" energy created by the solar system you have with batteries etc.?  I thought most of these systems generally would not benefit if the power grid goes down or you lose access to power from the Utility/bad weather etc.  Is that not accurate, or did your system just include the storage aspect?  One of the drivers for me was the ability to have a day or two of power in event of hurricane etc without going the generator route.

The Powerwall storage system is the break thru (hopefully a break thru) that may make solar actually viable.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Nice Guy Eddie said:

Isn’t that what every solar salesperson says?

Out of curiosity, what energy providers are providing good credits these days? I Thought green mountain was one of better options in Houston.

Green Mountain is who I went with. Energy out at same price as energy in. Also provided 2500 in a check rebate when I switched. The per kwh is more than my previous provider, but at least it is clean and simple: one straight price kwh at any energy usage. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 minutes ago, Enchubben said:
  Reveal hidden contents

 

This all makes sense to me. My only concern was as some noted above potential repairs or maintenance/impact to the roof. Seems like you haven't had issues at least yet. 

Dumb question alert - so you can "bank" energy created by the solar system you have with batteries etc.?  I thought most of these systems generally would not benefit if the power grid goes down or you lose access to power from the Utility/bad weather etc.  Is that not accurate, or did your system just include the storage aspect?  One of the drivers for me was the ability to have a day or two of power in event of hurricane etc without going the generator route.

You are correct that most grid tied systems do not work if the grid is down. This is generally to protect workers and lines from unexpected current from a solar system while they work on down lines. 

Batteries can change that equation by providing someplace for the energy to go other than the grid. And, obviously, they allow you to draw energy when both the grid and sun are down. The problem: battery systems are still expensive. If you look at the life of a system, I think the more recent v2 powerwalls still add 10 to 14 cents per kwh that you draw from them. 

14 minutes ago, Onboard 2.0 said:

The Powerwall storage system is the break thru (hopefully a break thru) that may make solar actually viable.

In some areas that is true, especially if the utility doesn't allow net metering or if you can better work energy arbitrage to sell when energy is most expensive and use the grid when it is cheap. But, for Houston at least, batteries make no sense unless you just want that whole house backup for power outages. 

For many areas, solar is already very viable, even without batteries.

Edited by Dahobbs

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Does anyone here have opinions on geothermal power? I am going to be building in the Northern Rockies.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Bevo said:

Does anyone here have opinions on geothermal power? I am going to be building in the Northern Rockies.

I've had several homes I've designed use geothermal.  In the mountains it's probably damned expensive. You need to either drill 300' deep wells or you create a horizontal loop field.  Lots of rock in the mountains, and that drives the cost of drilling, and or excavation.

I love the system. Very efficient, long life for parts.  No outdoor compressors, only indoor pumps, and heat exchangers.  There was a federal tax credit of 33% that would basically pay for your wells.  Still a more expensive system than a straight gas or electric fueled forced air system.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Onboard 2.0 said:

You need to either drill 300' deep wells or you create a horizontal loop field.

With the horizontal loop field are tree roots a big problem? The horizontal field required is pretty large and it would be a shame to have to cut down a lot trees because of it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Bevo said:

With the horizontal loop field are tree roots a big problem? The horizontal field required is pretty large and it would be a shame to have to cut down a lot trees because of it.

They're gonna clear a space that's 8-12' deep, and sized to fit the continual looping you need to create the correct thermal mass, think septic system drain field I think it's 3-6' of width per pipe x about 50-100' in length).  It's the rock in the spoil in the mountains that's probably the issue though.  It just increases cost.

I prefer the vertical well system, because it's the best way to get consistent temps.  It gets you the highest temps, especially when you can get down into bedrock, which then translates to having excess heat to drain off. 

Horizontal systems are suscpetible to drought conditions. You need a consistent water jacket around the piping to keep the temps working for the system.   Which ever system you choose, get guys who have a proven track record of installing closed loop systems. You only got one chance to get it right. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Nueces River Rat said:

Anyone familiar with Tesla's Solar panels ?      

 

0 - exorbitantly expensive in a 2.9 seconds...... heeeeeey ohhhhhhh.  

No don't really know that much, but would love to see his battery system actually work, and not price middle class folks out of it as an option.  If he can make a solar system perform like the 0-60 speed of a new generation Tesla it should be a home run.

I have done some limited reading on the Tesla roof shingles, and was not believing anything they said about them with regard to price or durability. Longevity, and durability are key issues for products cladding and covering your home, and the advertised cost was a blatant lie as I remember reading it. The ACTUAL cost per 100 sq. ft. would have been in the neighborhood of $2,500 per square, or more depending on the complexity of a roof system .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
21 hours ago, Onboard 2.0 said:

0 - exorbitantly expensive in a 2.9 seconds...... heeeeeey ohhhhhhh.  

No don't really know that much, but would love to see his battery system actually work, and not price middle class folks out of it as an option.  If he can make a solar system perform like the 0-60 speed of a new generation Tesla it should be a home run.

I have done some limited reading on the Tesla roof shingles, and was not believing anything they said about them with regard to price or durability. Longevity, and durability are key issues for products cladding and covering your home, and the advertised cost was a blatant lie as I remember reading it. The ACTUAL cost per 100 sq. ft. would have been in the neighborhood of $2,500 per square, or more depending on the complexity of a roof system .

I've seen the shingle thing and have to question how in the heck those things withstand the elements.  Like you said it might not be such a good thing to have them covering the most significant part of your home.  I'd stick to the conventional panels which sit on top of the existing roof.    

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, Nueces River Rat said:

I've seen the shingle thing and have to question how in the heck those things withstand the elements.  Like you said it might not be such a good thing to have them covering the most significant part of your home.  I'd stick to the conventional panels which sit on top of the existing roof.    

I won't specific any exterior material without 10 years of real world application. That and the cost is out of this world expensive. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 minutes ago, Onboard 2.0 said:

I won't specific any exterior material without 10 years of real world application. That and the cost is out of this world expensive. 

One thing I did hear and I should do some further follow up on this is that Tesla either self insures their product or offers insurance from a preferred carrier to cover any loses.  It can be expensive and depending where you live on the outrageous side to insure these things on your home insurance policy.  Hence this is one reason I don't think I see too many of here on the coast because windstorm coverage is already out of this world and is increasingly hard to afford or get especially if your structure is older and the roof is more than 15 years old.  At least on the replacement cost end of it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


mpu


Football ... Basketball ... Baseball ... Other Sports ... Recruiting ... Gambling ... Movies & TV ... Music ... Hobbies ... Lulz ... Food & Travel ... Daily Texan ... Help ... For Sale ... Politics ... Board Discussion
×
×
  • Create New...