Welcome to Ask Clark, a column designed to answer your financial questions, by money expert Clark Howard.
We Just Bought Solar Panels. Now We’re Being Asked to Sell Our SREC. Should We Do It?
Sherry From Virginia: “We recently installed solar panels and are now being contacted by another company to sell our SREC [Solar Renewable Energy Certificate]. They have several payment options. Is this a good idea? And generally which type of payout is recommended or more advantageous to us?”
Clark’s Take on Selling Your SREC
Clark says: “SRECs are credits you get for having solar installed in your home, and these credits in a number of states … can be sold off into the marketplace.”
Virginia’s SREC marketplace is still in the early stages, according to Solar United Neighbors, a nonprofit organization that promotes solar energy solutions.
As the market matures, Clark recommends that you learn about the supply and demand of SRECS in your local area before deciding to sell yours.
“So there are potentially multiple buyers of SRECs, and so you want to shop them with the providers available to you in Virginia rather than just being in a linear negotiation with the one company that approached you,” Clark says.
The sale of SRECS is “a way of creating more incentives in the marketplace for people to install solar,” Clark adds, “and the idea of SRECs is that when you put solar on your home, you are lessening the number of times that the local power company has to go buy very high-cost power on high-demand days. So you are helping out your next-door neighbor who doesn’t have solar by lowering what power costs them.”
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