Solar panels, the great hope for reducing electricity bills in your home and your Community

Instalación placas solares en comunidades de propietariosWith the increase in the price of electricity, many Communities of Property Owners are considering installing solar panels to reduce their consumption. We tell you what you have to consider before their installation.

2021 is going to become the most expensive year in the history of electricity bills due to the ups and down of the market and geopolitical pressures affecting its price. Is there an alternative? Opting for using renewable energies to become a country that is energy self-sufficient.

Spain is probably one of the best countries in Europe to install solar panels. We have very high solar irradiation values and a huge amount of daylight hours compared to our European neighbours. More and more companies and properties are choosing to take advantage of the benefits of renewable energy like solar energy.

A Community of Property Owners that provides energy from solar panels to both its common areas and the individual properties can save over 30% on its bills, depending on the type of installation, the power contracted and the investment made…

Would you like to use solar energy to make your property more efficient? We give you some key advice when considering the installation of solar panels.

What solar energy can be used for in your Community of Property Owners

If you install solar panels, your community will be able to allocate the energy generated to common elements of the building such as the lift, garage or lighting in the passageways. Or for the community’s common consumption like hot water or heating. Another possibility is to use the energy produced for individual properties. This option is completely compatible with the previous option and requires individual meters to be installed in each home.

The advantages of self-consumption of solar energy

  • Self-consumption allows us to be unaffected by increases in the price of electricity, as we are consuming our own energy.
  • It helps to reduce harmful emissions and to work towards a more sustainable planet.
  • Your savings will exceed your investment.

The Spanish climate means that his type of photovoltaic installation is very profitable. A €10,000 investment can be paid off over 10 years and the solar panels will have a useful life of approximately 30 years, plus all the financial savings made to your electricity bill.

Regulations for the installation of solar panels

In 2019 the government approved Royal Decree 244/2019 which establishes the conditions for photovoltaic self-consumption, supplementing the previous law of 2018 which removed the infamous “Solar tax”. The “Solar tax” was a fee that had to be paid for self-consumption of electricity generated by the owners of solar panels.

With the introduction of the new legislative reform, it makes more sense than ever to install solar panels and share the energy generated. Clearly, solar energy is a safe and profitable bet for Communities of Property Owners and yours could be next.

We tell you what you need to know about the new Law:

  • No more taxes: You no longer have to pay tax on auto-consumption of electricity generated.
  • Offset system: This system involves sending to the grid the energy that you produce but do not use at the time and, in exchange, your electricity company applies the corresponding discount to your bill. This law allows owners to send any excess energy produced to the grid and obtain, in return, a discount on their electricity bill.
  • Shared self-consumption: Communities can generate their own energy and share it.
  • No power limits: Limits on the power installed are removed. Previously we were limited to the power limits we had contracted.

What permits does the Community need to install solar panels.

According to article 17.1 of the Horizontal Property Law, the installation of renewable energy systems in a community of property owners must be approved by a third of the members of the community, who in turn represent a third of the ownership shares. You can find more information in this article on requirements and permits for the installation of solar panels.

How many solar panels does a community need?

This depends on how much electricity you use and when you use it, for example a consumption of over 5,000 kWh would need a minimum of 7 solar panels.

The number of solar panels needed can also be calculated from the monthly amount of your electricity bill. In this respect it is important for a professional to carry out a study and explain the various possibilities available to you. Contact your Mediterráneo Administrator for advice.

How much does it cost to install solar panels in a Community?

This depends on many factors:

  • The quality of the solar panels
  • The size and power of the installation
  • The degree of difficulty involved in carrying out the installation

Where can photovoltaic panels be placed?

They can be positioned in many places, on roofs, on the ground, on columns. It depends on the project feasibility study and the specific characteristics of the property.

Orientation and tilt angle

The most important thing is for the panels to be facing south in order to take full advantage of the hours of sunlight and for the groups of solar panels to be installed at an angle which will be determined depending on the latitude of the building.

Revaluing your property

The value of your property is affected by all the characteristics that make your house special as well any improvements made to it, whether this is a complete refurbishment, like installing a lift, or constructing storerooms or fitting solar panels. Everything counts, and when the time comes when you need or want to sell it, this will increase its valuation.

Types of photovoltaic solar installations

  • Self-consumption connected to the grid

This type of supply will allow you to consume the energy generated by your solar panels But when there is none, you can continue to use energy from the electricity company.

  • Self-consumption not connected to the grid

With this type of installation you do not depend on an electricity company, but storage systems, like solar batteries, must also be included for when the sun is not shining.


Steps to follow to install solar panels in your Community

Talk to your Mediterráneo Property Administrator to see if solar panels can be installed in your property and propose it at the Meeting. It will be enough for a third of the residents to vote in favour of placing the installation on the common roofs. In relation to this, the LPH (Horizontal Property Law) states as follows:

“The installation of common or private systems that use renewable energies may be agreed, at the request of any owner, by a third of the members of the community representing, in turn, a third of the ownership shares.”

In this article you can find out more about the requirements and permits needed to install solar panels in your Community.

Can residents who voted against the solar panels benefit from them?

No, they cannot benefit from them and nor can they be charged for the cost of their installation. According to article 17.1 of the LPH

“The community may not charge the cost of installation or adaptation of these common infrastructures, nor those derived from their subsequent upkeep and maintenance, to those owners who did not vote expressly in favour of the resolution at the Meeting. However, if subsequently, the owners who voted against, request access to the energy supplies, this may be authorised provided that they pay the amount that they would have had to pay, duly updated, applying the corresponding legal interest.”

One important aspect is that self-consumption cannot be imposed on all the owners. This last point differs from the installation of a lift which, even if someone votes against it, must be installed.

Take professional advice

If you really want your Community to be energy efficient and self-sufficient, it is best to seek the advice of an energy efficiency professional, who will review the current installations in the common areas and properties, check the condition of the roofs and their orientation and submit an energy refurbishment plan for your community, with the most appropriate power and the pros and cons of this refurbishment.

Achieving environmentally-friendly communities with efficient electricity consumption should be an objective for communities of property owners. Long term, the energy savings will certainly be greater and will have a beneficial effect on the owners’ bank balances. At Mediterráneo we support encouraging the use of sustainable resources, believing they are a long-term investment and not just an expense.

If, after reading this article, you would like to be one of those benefiting from all the advantages of having solar panels and you want to propose this to your community, ask your administrator about this or send us a message.

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