Generate electricity: ‘Rent a Roof’


A West Midlands contributor sends news about the ‘Rent a Roof’ scheme: her next-door neighbours are to have solar PV panels installed on their roof at no charge. 

Their bills will be reduced as free solar electricity is generated – the installers will receive the Feed-in Tariff. 


Independent You-Gen works for “a UK where homes are energy efficient and local power generation from renewable sources is the norm.” Founder Cathy Debenham writes

“Solar PV panels worth £10-12,000, installed on your roof, free of charge – it sounds too good to be true, but is it really? 

“The ‘rent a roof’ model, as it is known, is proving attractive to installers and investors. A Shade Greener, Homesun and Isis Solar are just three of companies offering the service, and more will follow . . . 

A strong, south facing roof is needed 

“The company looks for homeowners with a south facing roof that is strong enough to install solar PV panels. They install a system free of charge, and agree to maintain it for 25 years. In return you sign a contract agreeing that they should receive the feed-in tariff income on all the electricity that installation generates for the full 25 years.” 

More information about Rent a Roof comes from the Energy Saving Trust.

She adds: 

“If you’ve got the capital to invest, and you want solar panels, it makes more sense to install the solar panels yourself and benefit from the feed-in tariff.” 

Opposite: EvoEnergy installers enjoy their work.

 Commercial premises 

Larger roof top and ground mounted solar array projects are financed by solar brokers who, similarly, finance the building of the asset and the host organisations have reduced electricity bills or rents.

For more information see the Electric Roof Company.


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