Phoenix Solar Sales Mirror Larger Real Estate Market in August 2015

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Phoenix solar home sales statistics - August 2015

While the real estate market as a whole slowed down in August, the percentage of solar home sales in the Phoenix area increased to 1.94 percent (up from 1.82 percent in July),  according to recent data from the Arizona Regional Multiple Listing Service (ARMLS) from August 1, 2015 to August 31, 2015.

There were a total of 93 verified solar home sales in Maricopa County for the month of August, down 5.1 percent from July (see notes below).  Homes with a solar leases (whether monthly lease payments or prepaid monthly solar leases) accounted for 71 of the 93 sales (76%, up slightly from last month) while homes with solar owned electric systems accounted for the balance of 22 solar home sales in August 2015.

The median price for a solar home was $255,000, up 2 percent from July and 30 percent higher than the median price for a single family home in Maricopa County for August 2015 (3 percent more than July).  The median price for a leased solar system home was $249,000 (up 3.8 percent) while homes with solar owned systems was $332,500 (up 7.3 percent).   The median price for a single family residence home in Maricopa County in August was $222,000 (down from July, again).

The average days on the market for a home in Maricopa County was 58 days in August 2015.  Homes with solar owned systems outpaced with the average resale, also taking an average of 50 days to sell.  Solar in general took an average of 63 days to sell since homes with solar leased systems averaged 68 days for the month of August.  The median days on the market for a solar home in Maricopa County was 46 days versus a market average of 39 days (solar leases had a median market time of 52 days while solar owned was 31 days).

Two-thirds of the total solar home sales in Maricopa County were in APS territory (down slightly from last month) while the remaining 33 percent of the solar homes were within SRP territory.  This has been a consistent trend over the last several months.  SRP solar homes sold in 40 days versus solar homes selling in 47 days in APS territory.  The median price for a solar home in APS territory was up in August to $250,000 while the median price in SRP areas was down to $257,025.

Mortgages helped finance 83 percent of all solar sales in the Phoenix area in August (a fairly consistent number each month).  Conventional financing (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgages) accounted for 35.5 percent of the total solar home sales in the Phoenix area (down from last month) while FHA and VA financing total 26.9 percent and 20.4 percent respectively. Cash home buyers purchased 17.2 percent of the total Phoenix solar homes for sale in August.  Sellers contributed towards buyer’s closing costs just over a third of all sales (36.6 percent).

The typical solar home sold in the Phoenix area in August was a 3 bedroom, 2 bath home with 2,157 square feet on a 7,449 square foot lot.  The solar home was built in 2003 and had a 7.8 kW solar array on the roof.

Solar home sales in the Phoenix area were dominant in the west valley, especially along the 303 corridor (see Phoenix solar heat map).

Overall market inventory has been holding steady in the 19,000 to 20,000 home range.  Sales for the month of August declined, but that decline is a typical seasonal decline in the Phoenix area.  Traditionally we should expect to see activity to pick up between now and Thanksgiving with a dramatic decrease in activity in December (as reflected in January sales numbers).  I would expect the level of inventory to increase slowly and steadily until the end of the year as well.  Anecdotally, real estate agents overall are still across the board with their marketing of solar homes, pushing for estimated savings and the key component to selling.  Some of the agents continue to struggle with lease transfers, not usually as a result of the leasing company or buyer’s inability to qualify for the lease, but due to the lack of foresight to include the lease transfer in the contract and oversight of the transfer process.

You can read more about the general real estate market in Phoenix and the monthly sales at GreenLeafAZ.com

Considering selling a home with solar? Want to know how much additional value solar adds to your home? Give the Solar Home Broker a call at 480-888-1234!

NOTE:  Only resale single family residences that sold during the month of August 2015 in Maricopa County with a sales price of $500,000 or less were used in the analysis.  Properties priced over $500,000 fall into the luxury category and were not used in this analysis. All sales were verified to have a solar electric (solar PV) system that was owned outright by the home owner or had a solar lease.  While all attempts were made to ensure quality and accurate data, I am limited by the data reported (for example, only 24.7 percent of listing Realtors actually inputed the size of the solar system).  Homes with only solar water heaters or solar thermal pool systems that did not have a solar electric system on the roof were not included due to the extreme differences in the two types of systems.
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