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What Are Solar Dealer Fees and Why Should I Care?

Chris Cucci

As the cost of energy continues to rise, many consumers are turning to solar as away to save money and reduce their environmental impact. Installing solar panels on your roof is a great investment that can help you reduce your energy expense and your reliance on the grid, but it's important to be aware of the hidden fees that can increase the cost of your solar system. One of these fees is the dealer fee, which is charged by some lenders in the solar industry. In this blog post, we'll discuss what a dealer fee is, why you should care about it, and how to avoid it.

What is a dealer fee?

A dealer fee is a fee that lenders charge solar installers to sell their loans or financing options. These fees can currently range from 20% to 40% which inflates the cost of solar for the consumer and is hidden in the price quote that you get from the installer! Installers are not required to pass this fee on to the consumer, but they often do so rather than eating the cost themselves and reducing their profit margin. As a result, you may end up paying more for your solar system without even realizing it.

Why should you care about dealer fees?

Dealer fees can significantly increase the cost of your solar system. If you're financing your solar installation, the dealer fee will be added to the total cost of your loan, which means you'll end up paying interest on this fee over the life of your loan. This can add up thousands of dollars over the life of your solar system. Furthermore, dealer fees are often hidden or not disclosed by the installer or the lender, which means you may not even be aware of the additional cost until it's too late.

How can you avoid dealer fees?

The best way to avoid dealer fees is to work with a reputable solar installer that is transparent about their pricing and financing options. Ask your installer if they charge a dealer fee and if so, how much it is. If the fee is significant, consider working with a different installer or financing company that does not charge dealer fees.

How do you know you can trust your installer?

Climate First Bank is the solution. We have made it our mission to provide a loan with no hidden fees and that means ZERO dealer fees. We also have an onboarding process that all solar installers are required to go through before they are authorized to offer our best in the industry solar loan program. When you work with Climate First Bank, you can be assured that there are no dealer fees and that you are working with a reputable installer who has been vetted by the bank.

To summarize, dealer fees are a hidden cost that can significantly increase the cost of your solar system. As a consumer, it's important to be aware of these fees and to work with a transparent installer or financing company that does not charge them. By doing so, you can ensure that you're getting the best possible value for your investment in solar energy. Learn more about Climate First Bank’s solar loan program.

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