There are two key facets to retirement planning: reduction of expenditure, and investment optimization. Paying off your mortgage and researching low-risk/long-term stock options are likely the first steps of planning, but more and more families are now looking to solar power as a viable financial option for both ends of the financial spectrum.
In line with owning your home rather than renting a living space, ownership of solar panels can be viewed as paying off your electricity in advance. With purchase options estimating a 20-year repayment, and system lifespans estimated at 45 years, owning your solar system provides a return of free energy generation for the remainder of the system’s lifespan once the 20 year mark has been reached.
If funds are not available to purchase a solar system outright, there are now cost-efficient loan and lease options available, both resulting in a day one savings by providing electricity to the homeowner at a lower monthly payment than would be spent on traditional utility charges. If a household experiences a monthly utility bill of over $150, a solar lease or loan will result in an immediate monthly reduction, saving hundreds-to-thousands of dollars each year that the system is installed.
TFS’ own clients, Bill & Linnea, made the switch to solar primarily as an investment for their retirement: “We’re in a retirement community, and there are a number of people here who have gone solar, but there are also many who have not.” When he asks his neighbors if they’re considering going solar, “often times I’ll hear someone say in response, ‘I’m too old, I’ll never live long enough to recoup my investment.’ And, I explain that they’re just not looking at it right. It’s not a recouping of your investment, it’s a yield. You’ve got money out there today earning a half of one percent and that’s taxable. When you put your money into a solar electric system, you’re going to get about 12% a year and that’s tax free. Where else can you go and get a tax-free return like that in this marketplace?”
TFS customers George & Laurie, the stars of our newest Solar Stories installment, recently made the switch to solar as part of their retirement planning! Watch their story at http://tfssolar.com/george-laurie