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Anyone have experience of buying a house with Solar Panels (freehold house/leasehold roof)

Discombobulate

Distinguished Member
Just buying a property and have found out the house is freehold but as there have been solar panels fitted the space above the roof is leasehold.

Anyone have any experience with this? Sounds strange.
 

jenam93

Well-known Member
It normally means the current owners got someone else to do the install of the solar panels, so the installers own them and hence have the leasehold of stuff above the roof.

The installers will also get the feed in tariff too so you will 'only' benefit from the electricity you use while it is generating.

Alternatively the owners paid for the install themselves but have decided to keep the FIT and hence setup a leasehold on the panels above the roof.
 
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IronGiant

Moderator
We had to get permission from our Building Society to have them installed due to the leasehold issue, so make sure you tell them, but it was a routine matter so shouldn't prevent you getting a mortgage I wouldn't have thought. Just ask them before getting too far into the application.
 

jenam93

Well-known Member
Will I have problems getting a mortgage on the place?
No idea on that aspect.

Some people like the eco side of solar panels and therefore expect to pay a premium for the house. Others hate the fact they are ugly and want to pay less accordingly. So the value and therefore valuation of the house could be affected.

If it were me I'd want a really good survey done specifically on the solar panel installation to help determine if it were done right in the first place, checking the roof structure for weight/watertightness, especially with the leasehold in place. This would not be covered by a mortgage valuation.

You would have to check out the leasehold carefully too i.e. what happens if the roof needs maintenance, who pays for the removal/storage/refit of the solar panels etc?
 

stevenM

Banned
I thought i would use the search function before creating my own thread. @Discombobulate did you manage to get a mortgage ok. I have just had an offer accepted on a house with solar panels but i'm under the impression that they were purchased and installed so thus not renting out their roof space.
 

SteveCritten

Distinguished Member
Then you will have no problems Steven. Ask about transferring the FIT though as it is possible for the previous owner to still receive that if not transferred.
 

Discombobulate

Distinguished Member
I got the mortgage without any problems in the end. Had to pay the solictors a bit more as they said their original conveyancing cost didn't cover this. Aside from that no problems.
 
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