In a recent report, “Clearing the Air – Addressing Three Misconceptions of PACE,” Morningstar ABS Research clarified a few important points about PACE financing.
Read an excerpt, then click through to see the whole report:
As financing of energy-efficient projects through property assessments becomes more widespread, concerns and misconceptions regarding its use and oversight have become more common. Morningstar Credit Ratings, LLC explores three misconceptions we have heard from market participants regarding the residential property assessed clean energy sector. First, we note that a PACE assessment is an asset-based obligation, rather than a mortgage loan, so lien-to-value ratio, more than an individual’s credit score, is a more appropriate risk indicator.
Updated Consumer Protection Policies, released at PACENation Summit, form basis for enforceable state and local legislation
DENVER, Feb. 16 – PACENation, the national, non-profit advocacy organization for Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing, today announced an important update to its 2016 residential PACE Consumer Protection Policies. The enhanced standards include customer supports and safeguards that go well beyond those found in any other form of home-improvement financing and are designed to facilitate the successful expansion of PACE to new states and local communities.
Homeowners use PACE to make qualified energy and efficiency upgrades to their properties and pay for them over time with a new line item on their property taxes. To date, PACE has empowered more than 130,000 homeowners to invest over $3.4 billion in projects that make their homes more comfortable and less expensive to heat, light and cool. It is estimated that PACE projects will help lower residential utility bills by billions of dollars. Local government sponsors of PACE point to the energy and environmental goals PACE helps achieve, the more than 20-thousand jobs that PACE has created or supports in their communities, and that it has little or no impact on their public budgets.
Many of you no doubt saw the January 10th Journal article, “America’s Fastest-Growing Loan Category has Eerie Echoes of Subprime Crisis.” We hope you share our disappointment that the article was so unfair to PACE. It might have emphasized that to date, over 130,000 homeowners report high satisfaction using it to finance often-necessary energy-related investments in their homes. Instead of leaving the reader with the impression that PACE is a new and dangerous form of finance, it might have noted that for decades, local governments have relied on the same property tax line-item mechanism to fund improvements that benefit property owners and meet a public purpose. It could have emphasized that PACE providers are committed to serving that public purpose, and as such, take seriously their responsibility to protect consumers.
As key California disclosure law takes effect and U.S. Department of Energy best practices become industry norm, leading residential PACE provider launches new contractor management system
SAN DIEGO, Jan. 10 – Residential Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing – a California home-improvement innovation that has become one of the fastest-growing forms of financing in America – is starting 2017 with robust consumer protections as the industry norm, including some which go well beyond any other form of consumer financing and actually will raise the bar for how homeowners experience home improvement.
When an energy services contractor sits down with a family at their dinner table to discuss the details of an efficient HVAC upgrade, solar installation, cool roof, or other energy upgrades, one question always comes up: “How will I pay for it?”
PACE financing is, increasingly, the answer to that question. PACE offers a more affordable and accessible way to finance energy efficiency, water efficiency, and renewable energy improvements to homes and commercial buildings. PACE programs have already funded over $3 billion in energy upgrades across the nation, and this increased investment has created stable work for local contractors —
Rancho Mirage, CA: K2 Clean Energy Capital, LLC has developed and executed the PACE financing for the construction of a $2.4M project including a solar PV carport system and installation of energy efficiency upgrades at The River at Rancho Mirage. The River, which was acquired by the CheerLand Investment Group in June 2014, is the premier shopping, dining, and entertainment destination in the Coachella Valley. The River features Century Theatres; leading restaurants including Fleming’s Steakhouse, The Yard House, PF Chang’s, and the Cheesecake Factory; and many high-end retail establishments.
Industry-leading solar loan and PACE financing now on one platform to simplify financing process for contractors and homeowners
SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE) — Dividend Solar, a division of Dividend Finance, now offers residential PACE financing and its industry-leading EmpowerLoan™ on a single platform for contractors and homeowners. This new platform streamlines the financing process for contractors and their customers, giving homeowners easier access to financing for solar and energy efficiency improvements.
“A single platform now means that our partners never have to make a change mid-sale and it gives the customer options to choose what works best for them,” said Chris Doyle, Chief Commercial Officer for Dividend. “With Dividend PACE, more homeowners can now qualify, while giving our partners the ability to expand their business into other areas of energy improvements as well.”
PACENation is your organization, dedicated to bringing PACE to every community in America. We’re working with groups throughout the U.S. to bring PACE to more places and make sure property owners, manufacturers, contractors, governments and investors understand its unique advantages. And as our market grows, we’re developing best practices and standards to help ensure the long-term success of PACE.
PACE is at a turning point, and PACENation will need additional resources to meet the needs of our rapidly growing marketplace. To that end, we are pleased to launch a membership program that will enable deeper engagement between PACE stakeholders and our organization and help bolster financial support for our efforts.
Roy A. Hale writes for CleanTechnica and the EcoReport:
“Last July, Leon County (home to Tallahassee) became the first Florida municipality to adopt the HERO PACE Program. Several other Florida counties and cities followed suit. The latest was Orlando, whose city council approved the program this week. These are a few of the milestones, as HERO PACE comes to Florida & Missouri.
“The key here is drawing a distinction between communities that have approved/adopted HERO and those communities in which the HERO Program has officially launched. There is typically a gap of between 3–6 months between the time of approval/adoption and an actual launch,” explained a company spokesperson.
AUSTIN – The Travis and Williamson counties’ PACE programs closed their first commercial projects today, totaling $3 million in financing for energy and water saving retrofits to three Simon Property Group malls: Barton Creek Square in Austin, Lakeline Mall in Cedar Park, and the Round Rock Premium Outlets.
“These projects are exactly what we had in mind when the legislature created PACE,” said Texas Rep. Jim Keffer, chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee and the PACE bill author. “The upgrades will save water and energy, improve the tax base in these communities, and provide long-term financing for the property owners. Truly a win-win-win for Texas.”