Homeowners associations and solar access in Texas
Texas law protects your right to go solar. But, there are limits.
Texas law allows HOAs to restrict installations under the following conditions:
- The system is installed without prior approval by the HOA
- The installation is located on common property within the subdivision
- The system is installed in a way that voids its warranties
- The system has an element that is not in a silver, bronze, or black tone
- The installation extends higher than the roofline, does not conform to the slope of the roof, or is not parallel to the roofline
- The system is ground-mounted and extends above the homeowner’s fence
- The solar energy devices are illegal or violate public health and safety
Many HOAs still enact unreasonable restrictions on solar installations. There are steps you can take to fight them. Although an HOA cannot block your system, they can tell you where to install panels. You can fight this if you can prove their restriction would lower the annual energy production of your system by more than 10%.
We’ve developed a comprehensive guide to working with your HOA to install solar. Download it here.
Going solar in Historic Districts
Have you struggled to get a solar system project approved because your house is in a historic district? Luckily, going solar in a historic district has gotten way easier!
In 2021, Solar United Neighbors helped pass the Solar Consumer Protection Act. This act ensures that homeowners in historic districts can go solar with no additional approvals or permits needed. Before, cities like Houston would require a separate administrative approval process for homes in historic districts to go solar.
The passage of the Solar Consumer Protection Act means that if you live in a Historic District in Texas, your application to install solar panels will no longer be treated differently than other homes.
Don’t let living in a historic district deter you from going solar!