Brico offers solar panels for rent
Belgian DIY store chain, Brico, has decided to launch itself into green electricity. In its stores or even online, clients can now choose to buy or rent solar panels. The renting solution will cost 4,5 euros per month for one 300 watts panel. While it might seem appealing, the future government’s solar tax will hinder any cost savings.
Solar panel technology has come a long way since the very expensive blue slates that required government incentives to sell. Today, the electricity production devices are even available at the furniture shop Ikea. Brico has decided to sell them as well but with a twist. The Belgian DIY store chain will also offer a renting solution.
“It’s a first in Belgium. The financial obstacle disappears, and the energy transition becomes available to all. More so, the renting solution offers an immediate cost return,” declares Brico.
The Belgian chain has partnered with fellow-compatriot Earth. The company specialized in solar panels will be in charge of the installation, whatever the solution chosen by the client.
While numerous factors can come into play, such as the roof orientation, it’s possible to calculate an average cost for solar panels. Thirteen Brico 300 watts panels will be required to provide electricity for the average household with a yearly consumption of 3.500 kWh.
At 4,5 euros per panel every month, the annual cost stands at 702 euros. Creg, the federal energy regulator, calculated that the average yearly electricity cost for the above-mentioned house would be at 1.020 euros in Wallonia and 878 in Brussels. Thus, Brico’s solar panels renting solution present a direct advantage.
Only interesting in 2019
But, there is an issue. Next year, the government will introduce a solar panel tax. In Wallonia, homeowners having purchased or renting said panels will have to pay on average 330 euros per year.
In many cases, this tax will seriously hinder the return on investment of solar panel owners or renters. For those who can afford it, purchasing the panels will be a better solution. For the abovementioned case, thirteen solar panels would cost 5.503 euros (VAT at 6%). That represents only eight years of rent, and the average life of solar panels stands at 20 years.