Jul 11, 2008

Review of Financing Opportunities for Solar PV and Solar Thermal Installs

This adapted from the July/August edition of Solar Today(solartoday.org)

In that solar water(solar thermal) and solar PV(photovoltaic) residential jobs can be expensive, some homeowners are looking for financing opportunities even after all government and utility rebates to help them pay for these green energy life choices. Here is an up date on what may be available now or in the future.

-"The builder or mortgage company may offer a lower interest rate when solar water heaters or other energy-efficient features are built into a new home."

-some"cities and states are investigating low-cost government-backed loans for solar installations that function much like government-subsidized Perkins Loans for students.
San Francisco, New York, and Colorado are considering offering subsidized loan programs at below bank rates guaranteed with general obligation bonds."

-"another trend affecting solar financing is the increasing use of 'power purchase agreements' for large-scale installations. Through these arrangements, a third party finances, builds and owns a solar installation; the site owner avoids all or most upfront costs and in turn buys the solar electricity from the third party through a long-term contract."

-"the city of Berkeley, Ca.(is considering) a program...that would allow property owners to install solar systems on their buildings and pay for the cost over 20 years through a voluntary special assessment on their property tax bills. Participants would pay only for the cost of their projects, including interest, and fees to administer the program. Berkeley would fund the project from a bond or loan fund that it repays through assessments on participating property owner's tax bills."

As a reminder Conservastore now supplies solar thermal water heating systems made in Sacramento by Solarroofs. We would be glad to help you with your home system.

So part of the planning as you research your smart energy life style is to do a lot of reading on what is available to you to lower your alternative energy system and financing costs.


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  2. Don't forget to study the www.dsireusa.org site to find what is available rebate wise for your locale. If your utility is community owned, you may find they have nice bennies for green energy installs.If you cannot find rebates in your area, involve your congressperson or councilpersons. They are all getting on the green bandwagon now and may fight for you to get some rebate $'s