Renters are set to share in the benefits of rooftop solar, with the launch of another new initiative designed to breakdown the barriers to getting landlords to agree to install a rooftop solar system for their tenants.
Solar Analytics – which specialises in data and monitoring devices – has expanded its business into offering solar for renters, launching Solar for Rentals, following its acquisition of Sydney-based start-up SunTenants earlier in the year.
The Solar for Rentals offering includes a calculator that can be used by both tenants and landlords to estimate the value of a rooftop solar installation and determine what a “fair” increase to a property’s rent may be.
When paired with Solar Analytics system performance monitoring dashboard, Solar for Renters is able to provide a transparent platform for both landlords and tenants that should help breakdown the confusion that can come with installing a solar system on a rental property.
Solar Analytics was founded by a group of engineers and researchers at the University of New South Wales and developed an innovative platform that provides detailed, real-time monitoring of rooftop solar performance, allowing potential faults with systems to be identified and resolved quickly.
“Solar Analytics has the best solar monitoring solution in the industry, which will provide owners peace of mind in the performance of their investment and will assure tenants of their solar savings,” founder of SunTenants Bjorn Sturmberg said.
“I think this is a fantastic outcome for SunTenants, Solar Analytics and for the rental property owners and tenants of Australia.”
Solar Analytics estimates that almost a third of households are renting, and have been traditionally locked out of the market for installing solar.
The challenge of split incentives, where landlords would bear the cost of solar while tenants are the beneficiaries through cheaper electricity, has made it difficult to find landlords agreeing to install solar
The SunTenants platform, and the Solar for Rentals initiative, seeks to address this gap.
Solar Analytics estimates that the installation of rooftop solar could save households somewhere in the range of $1,000 to $1,300 a year.
By sharing these benefits, landlords could achieve investment returns of around 13% per annum on the investment in solar power and increased property values, while leaving renters up to $400 a year better off through reduced electricity prices.
“It’s really a win-win for everyone” Solar for Rentals program manager Dr Lisa Beeren said. “When we look at the data, we can see all parties are saving money, and we’re helping install solar on homes that would otherwise be shut out of the solar market”.
Both Solar Analytics and SunTenants have been selected as participants in the Power2U program that is supporting the installation of solar systems and energy efficient LED lighting across parts of Sydney.
“I believe we’re at a turning point for sun-powered rentals. Our Ausgrid program joins the Queensland and Victorian Government programs in supporting an accelerated uptake of solar on rental properties,” Solar Analytics CEO Stefan Jarnason said.
“With Solar Analytics’ network of hundreds of Australia’s best solar installers, we will now be able to quickly service this underserviced market segment that represents 30% of detached homes in Australia.”
The Queensland Government recently encouraged households in regional north Queensland town centres to take advantage of a rebate program designed specifically to encourage landlords to install solar on rental properties.
Disclosure: Solar Analytics co-sponsors this website’s popular Solar Insiders podcasts.