Solar panels have been all over the news this week – The Guardian – in particular flagging the problems arising where “free” installations have resulted in long term leases on rented roofs, future sales, remortgages and a few other things that people dint think about.
We have a couple of other concerns that could trap the unwary –
Firstly, the strength of the roof, many older roofs may be undersized – especially of the original slates have been replaced with concrete tiles and no strengthening has been introduced, and more modern prefabricated roofs may have been designed down to minimum loading standards, care needs to be taken when the panels are fixed and designed.
Secondly, where a roof is rented to a solar company, they then become an “owner” for the purposes of the party wall etc act [owner defined here] and will need to be served with party wall notices even if the work is unrelated – for instance a ground floor extension! Some work may affect them however – a loft conversion for instance that affect the party wall onto which they have fixed any of their fancy boxes…
And, presumably insurers will need to know about the installation and may vary terms accordingly because of the joint interest.
We’ll be checking for this on our property surveys and party wall jobs from now on but, if you’re worried give us a call – 020 8295 1200