Solar Rights Act: HOAs Can NOT Prohibit Installation of Solar Panels

While exhibiting at the Home Show at San Diego’s Convention Center this weekend, a number of attendees visiting our booth expressed their desire for solar, but indicated that their Home Owner Associations (HOA) prohibited them from installing solar on their homes. The fact of the matter is that such prohibitions are illegal, pursuant to the California Solar Rights Act.

The Solar Rights Act prohibits Covenants, Conditions, & Restrictions (CC&Rs) like those imposed by HOAs, which would unreasonably restrict the use or installation of solar energy systems.

California Civil Code Section 714(a), provides that “[a]ny covenant, restriction, or condition contained in any deed, contract, security instrument, or other instrument affecting the transfer or sale of, or any interest in, real property . . . that effectively prohibits or restricts the installation or use of a solar energy system is void and unenforceable.”

The Energy Policy Initiatives Center at the University of San Diego School of Law has published a Review of the Statutes and Relevant Cases. Please refer to this document for a more thorough explanation. The bottom line, however, is that your HOA cannot prohibit you from installing a solar energy system on your home.

If you have an interest in solar, and your HOA is standing in your way, please let us know. We will be pleased to look into the specifics of your situation and speak with the HOA on your behalf. We will attempt to negotiate mutually acceptable terms by which you can be permitted to implement a solar solution. We have team members experienced in dealing with this situation, and have had successful outcomes satisfactory to all parties.

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