But some may not see the harm. The customer is still getting a deal, right? Not necessarily. Most of the promised annual cost saving from rooftop solar systems are associated with owning, not leasing the system. What’s more, as Bloomberg has reported, “[f]or people who own rooftop power systems, solar adds value to the home … Leased systems are another story because they’re considered personal property rather than part of a house. For many potential buyers, a solar lease is a liability rather than an asset.”
Saving $50 per month on your electricity bill would be nice, but not if doing so devalues your house by $10,000 - $15,000. A homeowner would have to realize 200 months or more of those kinds of savings to make out on the deal. But SolarCity starts collecting on day one.
It’s become an all too familiar story: politically favored companies work the system to enrich themselves and their wealthy investors at the expense of taxpayers and consumers. If Washington has any genuine interest in protecting consumers, they’d blow the roof off this scheme.