As you’d expect the Big Solar Co-op signs legal agreements with all our host sites. These are designed to be simple, clear and fair. The agreement is a lease, incorporating a power purchase agreement (PPA).
What does the agreement cover?
We lease the space above your roof and you give us access rights to install, maintain and connect to our solar equipment. We sell our solar power to you at a fixed rate which is cheaper than your current rate. You will keep your existing supplier for any power we cannot provide.
Our agreement is designed to be flexible:
Term: Our minimum term is 5 years. At any point after that you can buy out the system if you wish. The buyout cost is the depreciated value of the installation and does not include any penalties for our loss of future earnings. If you do not choose to buy out in the interim the lease and power purchase agreement both run for 30 years.
Work on roof: If you need to repair the roof or carry out other works we will remove and re-install panels at our cost. We won’t charge a penalty for lost revenue unless the panels need to be removed more than twice during the lease period or your repairs take over a month.
Change of use: If you need to change the use of the building or demolish it meaning that our panels cannot stay on the roof, we will see if we can reinstall them on another of your buildings. If there is no replacement site you will need to pay the standard buyout cost.
Sale: If you sell the property, the lease and power purchase agreement will go with the property.
Who runs the solar panels?
As the owner of the array, the Big Solar Co-op is responsible for installing and then maintaining the solar panels. We will monitor the system, rectify any faults and seek to improve performance over time where possible. We insure the equipment against damage to your property or the general public. We will work with you to maximise your use of the energy our panels generate. Your solar generated electricity usage is metered and billed to you at the agreed rate. Any energy that isn’t used on site is exported to the grid and we receive the wholesale energy price.
What are the steps?
- An outline proposal detailing our power purchase price, solar design and timeline, tailored to your site. We want to work with you to reach an agreement which works for us both.
- A simple 6-month exclusivity agreement. It’s not legally binding but it indicates that you are happy with the proposal.
- A draft legal agreement (usually a lease). We aim to keep costs and complexity down by:
- Using a simple, transparent lease without hidden punitive clauses
- Using video calls with both parties present to reduce long email chains.
- We pay any costs of registering the lease. Each party pays its own share of any other legal costs.
Our project and legal teams are happy to answer any questions.