John O’Brien, Register of Deeds.
Placing solar panels on your home could hinder homeowner’s abilities to sell or refinance their properties without first receiving a release or termination from solar vendors, Essex County Register of Deeds John O’Brien warned today.
O’Brien issued the warning after observing Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) financing statements being recorded in at the registry in conjunction with installation of home solar panels. He asked the public to exercise caution and seek legal representation when considering having solar panels affixed to homes.
“I am not trying to discourage anyone from installing solar panels on their home. I just want to advise them, before signing any of these solar panel installation contracts please take a copy of the contract or agreement to your attorney for review to insure these leases are offered in good faith and with accurate disclosures,” O’Brien said.
In 2013, 151 UCC solar panel filings were recorded, 683 in 2014, 1,166 in 2015 and 265 through March 7.
“We have received numerous inquiries as to whether or not these UCC filings create an encumbrance on the title to people’s property. It is my opinion that these UCC Financing statements do in fact create an encumbrance on the title to the property, the register said