Selling Solar to Real Estate Investors
Savvy real estate investors and developers are always looking for smart ways to stand out and improve their return on investment (ROI). It’s their job to know which design features sell houses—and these days, eco-friendly home features are crucial to consumers, which has helped spur the residential solar-power industry.
Because solar-powered homes are in such high demand, knowing how to sell solar technology to potential investors can be lucrative. Read on to learn more about what you need to know to sell solar to real estate investors.
Show the General Benefits
The first step to any good sale is to explain the benefits of the product. Offer any potential real estate investor the value proposition they can share with their clients.
Decreased Utility Bills: While saving money on utility bills isn’t necessarily what real estate investors and developers are concerned about, you can bet it is something their clients are thinking a lot about. Pitching the property as a money saver may help investors lure in new buyers. In fact, the average solar panel system will save consumers about $600 per year on their utility bills.
Increased Resell Value: Solar also increases property value. On average, each kilowatt added adds $5,900 in resale value, according to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. For investors, this is a huge win. The cost of solar keeps going down, but the value it adds is steadily increasing.
To be truly successful at convincing real estate professionals that solar is worth the investment, you’ll have to get more specific about the benefits they can see themselves. That starts with doing your research and knowing your local market.
Tax Incentives: Teach the investor about the myriad incentive programs available. There are many national, state, and local tax rebates offered for green development; research them and share them with potential real estate investors. Sustainable properties can even qualify for incentives like the Renewable Energy Certificate.
Green Rating: Solar energy may also help a property obtain a green rating, such as the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification, which may offer additional state and national tax credits and help increase value for potential clients.
Offer Tools and Resources
Knowing the general benefits of solar and the specific solar incentives in your area can only take you so far. The real estate investor will also need to consider whether or not their specific property will work well with solar — and you’ll need to help them figure that out by offering additional tools and resources.
Solar Calculator: A solar calculator can help a potential investor determine the daily generation and savings of a solar panel system on their property.
Solar Radiation Map: The weather and peak sun-hours on their property will greatly determine whether solar panels are a good choice. Provide a solar radiation map to help investors determine whether their property is a good fit for solar.
Take time to listen to the investor’s concerns and tailor your presentation to their needs. When faced with the facts of solar, and the numbers to back it up, most real estate investors will jump at the opportunity.
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