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What happens to the feed-in tariff when you sell your house

Posted by Cathy Debenham on 3 July 2012 at 9:08 am

I recently spoke to someone who installed solar PV when the feed-in tariff rate was 43p per kWh for small systems. They had been told by an EDF customer service person that when they sold their house, the new owner would have a new contract with EDF and wouldn't be eligible for the same tariff level. 

This is NOT true.

The feed-in tariff is attached to the installation, not the owner. So if you sell your house, the expectation is that you will include the solar panels (as a fixture and fitting), and that the new owner will get the feed-in tariff at the same rate (index-linked) for the remaining period.

This strikes me a a great selling point. The new owner gets lower electricity bills and a regular income. I hope that surveyors and estate agents are recognising the long term value of solar PV when they value properties with it installed.

To read more information about the feed-in tariff and selling your home, click the link.

Photo by stephengg

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Comments

7 comments - read them below or add one

Stone2001

Stone2001Comment left on: 16 October 2017 at 3:58 pm

Hi what if you are buying a house but can't afford the price they want for the Feed in Tariff and they sell to another company? Dose that then become a lease? Our mortgage are happy with it going ahead and our mortgage advisor has said that it shouldn't affect us remortgaging or selling but I am unsure...

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Cathy Debenham

Cathy DebenhamComment left on: 29 April 2013 at 8:28 am

While Mary is right that you can set up a lease for the solar panels, the buyer's mortgage company may not be keen on it. They have strict criteria for this kind of lease which includes requirements for removal of the panels, servicing etc, click here for more detail.

There is little evidence that solar panels currently add to the sale price of your property, although some research shows that they make it a 'deal-sealer'.

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maryEn

maryEnComment left on: 28 April 2013 at 9:25 pm

When you sell a house you remain the registered Fit person so unless the buyer pays extra for your panels, I would keep the FIT payments. Your solicitor will need to draw  up a lease similar to a lease that people enter into with a solar panel company that rents the space above the roof to put solar panels on.

I doubt buyers will want to pay extra for the panels, but they would like the free electricity so it shouldn't put them off buying the house. Lots of estate agents don,t realise sellers can keep the FIT payments though.

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Cathy Debenham

Cathy DebenhamComment left on: 6 July 2012 at 8:28 am

Fred, the government has set out clear guidance. It says: "We expect standard property ownership rights to be applied to the ownership of the generating equipment. When ownership of that property changes we will expect the ownership of the generating equipment and FITs payments to also change and pass to the new owner of the property and this will need to be notified to the scheme administrator. It will be left to the market for the previous owner to be compensated for the remaining value of the FITs payments and on-site benefits (eg through a higher price paid for their property)."

However, while that is the intent, it doesn't stop people looking to see if they can find legal ways to get round it. I know that there are people doing just that, but haven't yet heard of any working in practice. My own view is that trying to keep the FITs income when selling your house will make it so much more difficult to sell that it's probably not worth the hassle, and it's better to put the effort into educating potential buyers so that they understand (and pay for) the added value.

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Fred1

Fred1Comment left on: 6 July 2012 at 5:22 am

Hi all,

Since there are more than 250,000 systems on roofs there must have been a fair number sold by now. I would have thought the companies should all know about it. Is there chapter and verse in any of the Ofgem or DECC documents ???, I presume it has been covered by one or the other. Better to be able to quote the source than get in to a "yes it is no it isnt" cycle....

Thanks

 

 

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Cathy Debenham

Cathy DebenhamComment left on: 5 July 2012 at 9:14 am

Hi Morris. There's nothing to stop you, but if I were the new owner I wouldn't be very keen on that idea. And you may find the new owners mortgage company is not keen either. The mortgage lenders association have a set of terms on which they will agree rent a roof schemes, and it may be difficult for an individual (rather than a rent a roof company) to comply.

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morrisok

morrisokComment left on: 3 July 2012 at 11:47 am

But do you have to sell it to the new owner as a fixture and fitting? 

What is stopping me renting the roof to myself now and when I sell it the new owner would have to take on that, the same as if I had rented my roof to a third party company instead of buying them?

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