Can Homeowners Associations Prohibit Solar Panels in Texas?
If you live in a neighborhood that is a part of a homeowners association or property owner association, you may run into some issues when installing solar panels on your home. Most homeowners associations have an approval process on new additions, modifications, and even exterior repainting projects which can make it hard to install solar panels on a home.
Luckily Texas homeowners are largely protected from HOAs and property owner associations (POAs) by solar access laws. You may still encounter an HOA or POA who has the authority to say no to solar a solar panel installation, however getting HOA approval on an installation doesn’t have to be overly difficult especially if you work with a solar installation company for the design.
Solar Access Laws
Solar access laws were created on a state basis in order to limit the power of a homeowners association on the restriction of installing solar panels on a home. Because state governments are the ones to draft solar access laws, they are different depending on where you are in the country, but all work somewhat the same way. Homeowners associations have limited power when it comes to the placement of solar panels, but generally, if the solar panels are installed on the roof of a home, it is out of the HOA’s jurisdiction.
HOA Restrictions in Texas
Texas has solar access laws in place that block HOA’s and POA’s from restricting the installation of solar panels. Although solar access laws have been enacted for some time now here in Texas, there was one small caveat that was in place that allows HOA’s of a smaller size, to restrict the installation.
Before the passing of Senate Bill 1626, any HOA developer that owned more than 50 lots in any single subdivision could bar solar installations. There are some instances where installation restrictions occurred, but now every homeowner has the right to install solar.
Solar Financing Laws
In Texas, the solar access laws also put systems in place to help you out with solar installation financing. From discounted solar loans through government plans, to rebates and incentives, the solar access laws made it much easier for homeowners to make a switch.
Solar panels also apply to an annual exemption which allows you to deduct paying taxes on the added value solar panels brings to your home.
Protected Solar Installations
Types of solar installations protected in Texas solar access laws include:
Solar Water Heating
Solar water heaters use light reflectors to focus light on tubes or tanks that hold water. The water residual reaches high temperatures throughout the day, and even during the winter which can offset a large portion of money spent on the heating water in your home.
Solar photovoltaics are the panels that you’ve probably seen on the top of buildings. They’re cells that convert sunlight into electricity using the photovoltaic effect, which is just a quick way of saying the process that converts light photons into electricity.
Getting HOA Approval
Getting HOA Approval on an installation of solar power technologies may seem intimidating but in most cases, it’s just as easy as informing your homeowner’s association about Texas laws regarding solar panels. Just keep in mind that you will still need to ensure that the panels you go with keep up with the community standards. If you’re interested in cutting down on your energy bill, contact Cam Solar to set up your free solar assessment today