MESA, AZ - Some homeowners in the Valley are turning to solar panel leasing as an alternative, in hopes of saving money.
A new national survey shows 90 percent of utility providers are expecting to raise rates in the next few months.
It's not clear how much this will cost customers, but it's likely we'll see those electric bills go up.
Jeff Hodgkinson of Mesa put 22 solar panels on his roof back in March. According to Hodgkinson, the system generates about 70 percent of power in his home.
He leased the panels from SolarCity in Phoenix.
Hodgkinson says he paid around $8,000 for a 20-year contract. That's roughly $33 a month.
Customers are not required to pay a lump sum upfront, but it's cheaper if you pre-pay for solar electricity, according to SolarCity.
As part of the lease program, installation and maintenance is free. Many customers will still have an energy bill from a local utility company.
Hodgkinson showed us his SRP bill, and it was just over $30.
"Usually it would be about $150," he said. Hodgkinson's home is roughly 2,400 square feet.
Sounds too good to be true? We asked Hodgkinson if there's a downside.
"It takes about four months to get setup. You have to go through a permit process," he said.
Hodgkinson said people who are considering a leased system may want to make sure their roof is in good shape.
If not, you might have to pay for the removal and reinstallation of panels while you fix your roof.
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