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Real estate agent's controversial take on homes with solar panels offers food for thought

Her warning about buying homes with solar panels has sparked a lively debate online with dividing opinions on solar-powered properties.

Real estate agent's controversial take on homes with solar panels offers food for thought
Cover Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent

Renewable energy seems to be a big deal in the real estate market. More than the fact that such sources of energy are clean and environmentally friendly, people save a lot of money on electricity bills too. However, there is a catch to buying a house that comes with solar panels. Alexis Lohse (@varealestateagent), a real estate agent based in Virginia has shared a highly debated video on TikTok about the dangers of buying a house with solar panels. The video has gained over 173.3k upvotes on the platform, along with 532 comments.

Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent
Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent

She starts the video by saying, "Do not buy a house with solar panels." The woman immediately adds that if a seller with solar panels on their house was trying to sell their house, they would also have to pay to get the solar panels off while closing. She talks about the common tactics used by salespeople to sell solar panels in houses. They first insist that they are "easily transferable."

Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent
Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent

They then go on to cover how solar panels are a clean source of energy and do not cause any harm to the environment while saving money on one's electricity bill. The creator mentions how whoever comes next to buy the property would have to go through the comprehensive loan process again. She explains, "Like buying a house, but like doing the loan process again with the solar panels." These complications could affect the entire buying process.

Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent
Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent

It could even affect an individual's "debt to income" and prevent them from being able to buy a home. She provides a simple comparison, saying most people would not buy a car as soon as they are about to buy a house. Only one of the two will work unless they are super rich. Another major problem with having solar panels is that individuals have to pay off the loan for the solar panel if they want to sell their homes.

Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent
Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent

All of this results in notable financial loss to the seller. She ends the video by saying that there is a perception that having solar panels adds value to one's home. But she says this is false, having checked with appraisers and agents about it. Lohse says the panels might add "value to you," but she asks people if it's really worth it to lose money when closing on a property. People on the social media site appreciated the real agent's useful tips in the comments section.

Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent
Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent
Image Source: TikTok/@billk197
Image Source: TikTok/@billk197
Image Source: TikTok/@honkytonbarbierealtor
Image Source: TikTok/@honkytonbarbierealtor

@mattlunden, presumably a real estate agent, said, "Just repped a buyer on a house with solar panels. We 100% had the seller pay them off at settlement." @oneeyedude20 commented, "If I wanted a house and they say I have to pay for the solar panel's loan, I'd walk. Or tell them to pay it off at closing."

Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent
Image Source: TikTok/@varealestateagent

@vlisa93 added, "And if you remove them, your roof warranty is voided because the panels leave damage when removed. Decreasing the home value." Other people had differing views, sparking a debate in the comments section. @jass2124380 said, "It is easily transferable. I don't know why you're telling people it's not. We went through this process. It doesn't cause you to not afford the mortgage." Solar panels or no panels Lohse has offered some food for thought on the subject. 

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