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According to a new study from the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (LBL), it does!  The report, entitled “Selling into the sun: Price premium analysis of a multi-state dataset of solar homes“, builds on previous research which concluded that homes with solar panels sold for more than those without.  LBL’s analysis of the housing markets across the United States shows that the premium paid for homes with solar is nationwide. The clear takeaway: solar panels really do add value to a home.

If you are thinking about purchasing a solar system for your home, the study’s conclusions should give you a boost of confidence that you are making a smart investment. LBL finds that homes with solar panels will benefit from a ‘solar premium’ when they are sold because buyers are willing to pay more for a home with solar panels.

LBL says that each watt of solar adds about $4 to a home’s value in California and about $3 per watt elsewhere. Thus, a home with solar should sell for about ($4 x 5,000W =) $20,000 more in CA or still ($3 x 5,000W =) $15,000 more outside of CA.

Specifically in this state analysis, prospective buyers wondering if solar panels increase home value were pleasantly surprised.  What is surprising about these figures is that they are very close to what you would pay for a brand new solar system today. Our own analysis of prices for 6kW solar systems in California reveals that some of the more expensive systems cost just over $4/W. And bear in mind that these prices are what you would pay before you take into account the generous 30% Federal tax incentive that is available.

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