Tesla Solar Roof Gives Houses an Improved Curb Appeal

Elon Musk believes the Tesla solar roof with solar built into the tiles gives houses a superior appearance.

If you’re selling your home, adding curb appeal can increase your home value 3% – 5% according to Consumer Reports.

If the market values a Tesla solar roof for enhancing curb appeal then this would add $30,000-50,000 to a million-dollar house and $60,000 to $100,000 for a 2 million dollar house.

28 thoughts on “Tesla Solar Roof Gives Houses an Improved Curb Appeal”

  1. I would have a normal roof deck under the panels — the underlayment, felt, plywood, etc. The solar panels only replace the shingles or tiles. But they’d be great at dealing with water since they’re encased in glass.

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  2. I agree with your diagnosis of the aesthetic problem and potential solution, but I think an even simpler solution is to just keep the things off the house’s roof. Just take the solar installation as an excuse to build a shed, carport, or patio shade structure. Size it so that this new installation has the right dimensions for your solar needs. Aesthetically, you won’t mind that the awning over the patio is covered in solar panels, because you’ll perceive it as a different structure with no need to match roofing styles.

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  3. This is a problem with residential solar install. It is VERY finance intensive. You really have to understand inflation rates, discount aka opportunity cost rates and be comfortable with spreadsheets.
    Some financially clueless people order it when they have credit cards accruing 20% interest. There is no way a home solar install is going to have a rate of return better than just paying off that credit card first.

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  4. To use a car example a Honda motor doesn’t just explode when it hits its 60,000 mile powertrain warranty.

    That feature is still under patent by Jaguar.

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  5. Something I’ve been thinking about lately — why not do this with regular solar panels?

    Tesla’s Solarglass roof consists of real photovoltaic shingles and fake shingles to complete the roof. This is because you don’t need to cover the entire roof in real PV shingles to achieve something like 8 or 10 kilowatts of capacity, and covering the entire roof in PV shingles would cost a fortune.

    So the principle of these solar roofs is to make solar shingles that imitate the look of traditional shingles. And to cover the entire roof uniformly.

    So why not flip it and make an entire roof out of apparent solar panels? Some real, and some fake, for the reasons I mentioned above. Half the roof is plenty to get a high capacity solar power system, and the rest can be imitation solar panels, made of the same tough glass – solar panels are surprisingly tough.

    Solar panels are much cheaper than these solar shingle roofs.

    A big part of the esthetic problem with solar panels is that they don’t cover the whole roof, making the roof look patchy and wounded. A roof covered in panels would look quite good to a lot of people, especially with the newer, slick panels from SunPower, First Solar, etc.

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  6. The claim that adding curb appeal bumps a home’s value by 3-5% appears to be incorrect. Consumer Reports didn’t actually report that. The original piece is here: https://www.consumerreports.org/home-improvement/8-ways-to-boost-your-home-value/

    Brian linked to an article at Pro Tools Review, which in turn linked to the above Consumer Reports article.

    Problem: CR lists eight things you can do to boost a home’s value, and adding curb appeal is not one of them. The closest is a fresh paint job, which they say can add 1-2%…

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  7. Common warranties for California residential installs are not only the panels last 25 years, they won’t lose more than like 8% of their rated capacity.
    To use a car example a Honda motor doesn’t just explode when it hits its 60,000 mile powertrain warranty.

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  8. Telsa’s energy division is going to make their automotive division look like a hobby. I believe the real growth is there. Backup batteries and solar.

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  9. I am concerned about roofs becoming more slippery. I always seem to have some reason I need to go up there. Maybe that would be less if I had a fancy Tesla roof. Slippery roofs are also dangerous for plumbers who have to go up there to clean out drains if there is not a more convenient cleanout for the particular drain, and the people who install the roofs, and possibly people cleaning/repairing the gutters, depending on their methods.
    If it is really slippery even pets could be vulnerable. My cats are often lounging in the sun on my roof.

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  10. Russ makes a good point, the “improvement” of 3% to 5% really depends a lot on the price of the house, and the total available roof-area that one might conceivably dedicated to glossy blue panels.  

    For instance, we JUST got done tiling ¾ of our entire south-facing roof with solar panels. SunSolar, 300 W panels, monocrystaline, 15% (on panel size) efficiency. The system is supposed to chunk out an average of 1,000 kWh/mo averaged over the yaer.

    I do the math, and 12,000 kWh/y for $20,000 — with a system life expencency of what, 20 years? — and the need to pay out HIRO load usurious rates for 10 years, works out to about $35,000 payout, divided by 250,000 kWh. Or, some 14¢/kWh or so, averaged out. Supposing the maintenance and periodic repair isn’t egregious. 

    So, it is a win.

    Currently power costs over 22¢/kWh in Kaliforniastan. Levies, subsidies, fees, surcharges, local, regional, state, interdepartmental, municipal taxes. Underwriting of impoverished peeps being unable to pay for “basic service”. Whole-system premiums to offset the billions in damages legal-eagles have leveled agasint them for liability for starting forest fires by inattention to forest pruning, and so on.  

    But even that (14¢/kWh) is coming to light as a sham: they’re STILL levying “system use” fees on us. Still.  

    Dunno, goats. 
    I wonder if Elon’s solar-panel thing is a pragmatic sham.

    ⋅-⋅-⋅ Just saying, ⋅-⋅-⋅
    ⋅-=≡ GoatGuy ✓ ≡=-⋅

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  11. And also how much electricity you use. Ideally, it would supply very close to the ammount you use. Even if your state makes the utility buy the surplus, it will be a pathetic rate most likely.

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  12. There are opinions, and then there are plain inaccurate statements, if not manufactured lies. No one should have any tolerance for the latter, as a general policy towards any subject matter

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  13. My power purchase agreement is stuck at $91.13 a month–every month. My neighbors? Not so much. They’re exposed to the yearly increases demanded by the utility, and ok’d by the utility commission. A great investment indeed, protected from any future price gouging.

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  14. No, let him speak. If he is wrong, then his words will be punishment enough. But he is right about the solar branch not being profitable yet.

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  15. You know what they say about opinions? Everybody has an A-hole and an opinion and they both stink. Musk is just an A-hole with an opinion. From ye ole wiki: Solar shingles became commercially available in 2005. In a 2009 interview with Reuters, a spokesperson for the Dow Chemical Company estimated that their entry into the solar shingle market would generate $5 billion in revenue by 2015 and $10 billion by 2020. Dow solar shingles, known as the POWERHOUSE Solar System, first became available in Colorado, in October 2011. The POWERHOUSE Solar System continues to live on in its 3rd generation iteration, and has exclusively been licensed to RGS Energy for commercialization.  In October 2016, Tesla entered the solar shingle space in a joint venture with SolarCity. Nobody is getting $10B in revs. Expensive product, too expensive. Home solar is just pre-paying your utility bill for 25-30 years. Bad investment. Give me the money and I’ll pay your bill and keep the extra from investing it. I win that one every day of the week.

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