Rent-To-Own Solar: A Complete Overview and Benefits

Learn about rent-to-own solar, a flexible financing option for acquiring solar panel systems without the need for upfront payment. Discover the benefits and considerations of rent-to-own solar and how Solar AI offers tailored solutions to help you embrace renewable energy and save on electricity bills.
what is rent to own solar?


If you have encountered the term “rent-to-own (RTO) solar” and found yourself unfamiliar with its meaning, this article is for you.

What Is Rent-To-Own Solar?

Rent-to-own solar is a financing method for getting solar panel systems. Instead of purchasing the solar system outright, the customer makes fixed monthly payments while the solar panel company retains ownership during the rental period.

How Solar Is Traditionally Sold In Singapore

Solar panel systems in Singapore are usually sold under upfront payment plans. Typically, customers have to pay a relatively large sum (~$20,000) for the entire cost of the system but only breakeven after 6-8 years.

While this option offers immediate ownership and long-term cost savings, it can be a barrier to entry for many homeowners in Singapore due to the high upfront investment. Moreover, individuals under upfront payment plans face the risk of the solar panel system experiencing premature failure, potentially resulting in the loss of their invested capital.

Such an outcome can hinder their ability to breakeven with their initial investment, posing a considerable financial setback. This, however, leads us naturally to the value and appeal of RTO solar.

The Value of Rent-To-Own solar

There are 4 main benefits of RTO solar.

Elimination of upfront costs

One of the main advantages of rent-to-own solar is the absence of upfront expenses. This mitigates the risk of substantial capital investment in a system that might fail prematurely.

Instant savings of electricity bills

In most cases, monthly rental fees under RTO plans are lower than one’s usual monthly electricity fees (~30% cheaper), thereby providing instant savings. This makes it an appealing option for those seeking to transition to renewable energy without a substantial initial outlay, which could take up to 6-8 years to break even.

Ultimately, actual cost savings depend on the customer’s usual electricity usage and the solar panel system’s power generation capacity. To get an estimate of your cost savings with a solar panel system, try out our simulation tool.

Maintenance responsibility

With rent-to-own agreements in place, maintenance responsibilities lie on the solar company instead of the property owner. As a result, the property owner does not have to fork out any out-of-pocket costs, which include the costs of managing both repairs and upkeep. This eliminates the possibility of any offset of solar savings due to incurring additional maintenance and servicing costs, providing a worry-free experience for the customer.

Investment diversification

By foregoing the immediate lump sum payment, customers can explore alternative investment opportunities with the saved funds. Allocating the capital to other financial instruments may generate greater returns over time. For instance, opting for Solar AI’s RTO plan at $240 per month instead of an upfront payment of $20,000 allows customers to invest the capital elsewhere.

Considerations for rent-to-own solar

Higher overall cost

As with any instalment-based payment plan, RTO solar arrangements are likely to incur higher total costs compared to upfront purchases.

Limited flexibility

Under a RTO arrangement, full ownership of the solar system is not achieved until the end of the rental term or the exercise of a buyout option. Hence, customers may face limitations in making modifications to the system or adapting it to evolving needs.


In conclusion, rent-to-own solar offers an accessible and adaptable path for individuals and businesses to adopt solar energy and contribute to sustainability. The choice between RTO and an upfront purchase plan ultimately depends on individual preferences and needs. Those seeking immediate liquidity for other assets may find RTO arrangements appealing, while others prioritising long-term cash savings may opt for upfront purchase plans.

Solar AI’s Rent-To-Own plans

At Solar AI, we offer both RTO and upfront purchase options for solar panel systems to provide you with the flexibility to choose the financing method that suits your needs best.

The prime benefit of subscribing to our RTO plans is that we take care of all maintenance aspects, including service, maintenance and repairs. Our team of experts is ready to guide you through the decision-making process and help you make an informed choice based on your specific requirements and financial goals.

For more information on our options, visit our website and embark on a sustainable energy journey that maximizes your savings and contributes to a greener future.

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Teo Yi Hui
Teo Yi Hui
A solar enjoyer
Teo Yi Hui
Teo Yi Hui
A solar enjoyer
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