Highland Commercial Roofing is pleased to announce the completion of the Stion solar lease roof-prep project for the 500,000 square-foot NFI warehouse and distribution center in Chino, California. This unique project is part of a growing trend that enables commercial and industrial building owners to generate new revenues by leasing their roof space for solar energy production.


Project Type

Perform extensive roof maintenance and install 5,280 tie-ins to anchor the solar panel support system to the underlying structure to ensure trouble-free performance during the 20-year term of the lease.

Conditions and Challenges

Before the solar panels could be installed, the supporting framework required tie-ins to the structural members of the building, while preserving the integrity and warranty of the roof. Further complicating the project were more than a hundred skylights and extensive rooftop mechanical equipment, which could not be disturbed.


After careful consideration, Stion chose Highland Commercial Roofing to perform the roof-prep work for the installation, which is expected to generate 1.9 megawatts tied directly to the Southern California Edison grid. “Once the solar installation goes in,” explains Highland President Rick Cunningham, “it’s ten to 20 times more expensive to work on the roof. So it was critical that the long-term maintenance was completed to ensure the roof would not leak throughout the term of the lease.”


Stion representatives were very pleased with the quality and professionalism of Highland’s work and have since partnered with the company on several more solar lease projects. “We know going into any lease that the roof has to be a strong part of the overall system,” explains Stion Vice President Jeff Cheng, “we chose Highland because of their extensive experience and knowledge in the fields of solar and commercial roofing.”


Solar roof leases represent an exciting new source of income for building owners. Rooftops are not generally included in the net leasable space calculation, but consider the effect on the NCI complex. The solar lease doubled the net leasable footage from 500,000 square feet to one million — but it requires the solid foundation of a roofing system that can remain without leaks throughout the term of the lease, which typically spans 20 years or more. And Highland can help owners with both. Highland’s 22 years of proven success working with commercial and industrial building owners to keep their roofs without leaks, our patented RainShield® Seamless Roofing System and now, our access to the rooftop Solar Leasing market makes Highland Commercial Roofing a key resource for your success. For more information, please contact Highland at 1-866-880-5252.

Is a Solar Lease Right For Your?

If you could add another floor to building, instantly increasing your net leasable space and pushing both your revenues and building value, through the roof, would you do it?

That’s pretty much a no-brainer, and while solar leases can accomplish all that,the question of whether it’s the right option for any given property is not so simple.

Commercial solar installations fall into two categories. A “Net Metered” installation ties to your electrical system and offsets the occupent’s usage, usually resulting in considerable saving on electrical expenses for heavy users. This is what’s often referred to as” running your meter backword”. Net metering enables you to guarantee the cost of your electricaly into the future, but usually requires a considerable direct capital investment upfront.

The second and increasingly more popular category for large commerical building landlord is a “solar lease” also know as a “Power Purchase Agreement “. Think of it as the power company becoming your new credit Tenant on a 20-year rooftop lease. The energy generated form the solar system belongs to the power company, but provides you with an entirely new floor’s worth of lease revenue. Other than keeping the roof maintained, there is no capital investment or expense required and often the cost of reroofing . if necessary, can be worked into the lease. Selection of suitable roof spaceis key, as is keeping your roof in top condition and your warranty in effect are impertent or expense required and often the cost of reroofing, if necessary, can be worked into the lease.

Selection Of Suitable roof space is key, as is keeping your roof in top condition and your warranty in effect are important for all of your tenants. Fortunately, we can help with all of that — including placing the lease, To find out if Solar Leasing is right for your building, contact Highland Commercial Roofing toll-Free,at 1-866-880.5252.