Advice for Financing Your Solar Project

January 4, 2024

Getting Started Financing Your Solar Project

Many homeowners are inspired to begin their solar journey due to their interest in helping the environment and doing their part to fight climate change. Often, they are surprised to learn that solar is a great investment with many economic benefits. Best of all, there are many financing options available to help you avoid paying upfront for your solar system installation. This means you won’t need to have immediate cash on hand. There are various ways to finance solar for your home or business, where the monthly payments can be equal to or less than the monthly savings from solar. This way, solar can be a no-money-down project that also provides net savings for your monthly budget.

Investing in solar panels is a smart choice both financially and environmentally. If you’re wondering how to finance your system, it’s simpler than you may think!

At Exact Solar, we recognize the importance of making solar accessible to everyone. There are many ways to pay for your system, and we’re here to help you navigate and determine which option is right for you. We understand that everyone’s situation is unique, so we avoid using a one-size-fits-all approach when helping our customers finance their projects. Our team stays informed about the latest financing choices so that our customers can have access to the best options available.

Your Options for Financing Your Solar Project

As solar becomes more popular among homeowners, options to finance your solar dream have increased. Here are some of the most common methods:

  • Cash Purchase: Paying for the solar system upfront with cash is the most straightforward option. It allows you to avoid interest charges and potentially benefit from long-term savings on your electricity bills. However, it requires a significant upfront investment.
  • Solar Loans: Many financial institutions offer solar loans specifically designed for financing solar projects. These loans can cover the upfront cost of the system, and you repay the loan amount, plus interest, over a fixed term.
    Solar Leases: With a solar lease, you essentially rent the solar system from a third-party provider. The provider installs and maintains the system, and you pay a monthly lease payment. While this option requires little to no upfront cost, the savings may be lower compared to purchasing the system outright. It’s essential to carefully review the lease terms and understand any escalator clauses.
  • Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs): PPAs are similar to solar leases but structured differently. With a PPA, a third-party company installs and maintains the solar system on your property, and you agree to purchase the electricity generated by the system at a predetermined rate. The benefit is that you only pay for the electricity produced, usually at a lower rate than utility prices. However, you don’t own the system, and the savings may be less significant in the long run.
  • Home Equity Loans or Lines of Credit: If you have equity in your home, you can consider using a home equity loan or line of credit to finance your solar project. These options often offer competitive interest rates, and the interest may be tax-deductible. However, keep in mind that you’re using your home as collateral, so be cautious about repayment terms and potential risks.
  • Government Incentives and Programs: Many governments and local municipalities offer incentives and programs to encourage solar installations. These can include tax credits, rebates, grants, or low-interest loans specifically for renewable energy projects. Research the incentives available in your area to see if you qualify for any financial assistance.

Solar Loan Programs for Financing Your Solar Project

Solar loans are a very common type of loan that homeowners take advantage of. They allow you to go solar and own the system with no down payment. You can take advantage of everything solar has to offer and not break the bank. Instead of paying your high, ever-growing utility bill, you’ll be paying off a loan for your own solar power plant that generates clean energy using a renewable source and that will keep offsetting your electric bill long after your loan payments are done.

It’s important to review the loan terms such as the dealer fee, repayment schedule, and annual percentage rate (APR) before signing the agreement.

Benefits of using the Solar Loan Program:

several coins sitting on top of a solar panel
There are many benefits to using the Solar Loan Program to finance your solar project.
  • If you have a good credit score, you’ll generally see better terms for your loan
  • Interest rates are generally low, so your monthly costs will be lower
  • Interest can be tax deductible – be sure to consult with your tax expert
  • Small payments every month rather than a high up-front cost
  • It will allow you to own your system, enabling you to take advantage of solar incentives and rebates
  • Usually doesn’t require you to put any money down to get started

Who Exact Solar Works With to Help Our Customers Finance Their Solar Projects

We maintain strong relationships with many solar loan providers to ensure that our customers are receiving the most thorough and accurate information regarding their options.

Below are some of the lenders that Exact Solar regularly works with:

When many of us think about homes with solar systems, we often imagine large, expensive houses. However, everyone from every background has the ability to participate in the green energy movement.

Financing Your Solar Project with Clean Energy Credit Union – Clean Energy for All

Clean Every Credit Union (CECU) is a not-for-profit credit union dedicated to taking action to make a positive impact across the world. To date, they’ve financed over 10,000 clean energy loans and helped offset nearly 700,000 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent.

Through programs like CECU “Clean Energy for All” loan program, those in underserved communities can reap the benefits of solar without an immense financial burden. The Clean Energy for All initiative is made up of two programs designed to increase access to affordable credit for minority borrowers and low-income borrowers.

The first program is the BIPOC Borrower Program and aims to provide affordable clean energy loans for Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color (BIPOC). For far too long, BIPOC communities have been subjected to the harms of pollution and struggled to access the benefits of clean energy. That’s why this program offers a 0.50% rate discount on all CECU loans for borrowers with a credit score 680+ and for those under, a discounted interest rate not to exceed the designated rate for a 680-credit score.

The second program is the Low Income Borrowers Loan Program. Many American families struggle with their energy bills and rising costs forcing them to choose between essentials and heating their homes. To combat this, CECU offers this program to families that are interested in investing in solar but worried about the financial aspects. To qualify, a single applicant’s income level must be less than 50% of Area Median Income (“AMI”), or the combined income level of two co-applicants must be less than 80% of AMI. You can find local AMI numbers here. The program offers the same terms as the first – a 0.50% rate discount on all CECU loans for borrowers with a credit score of 680+ and for those under, a discounted interest rate not to exceed the designated rate for a 680-credit score.

As with all loans, it’s important to review the terms and conditions diligently. We encourage all of our customers to consult with their financial advisors before making a decision.

Financing Your Solar Project with Credit Human – Solar Loans

Credit Human, a not-for-profit credit union, also offers loans for homeowners to invest in sustainable home improvements. The SustainableHome program provides easy financing options with great rates and flexible terms to help make your solar dreams a reality.

They have numerous plans to help customers go solar. Some of their most popular plans include 10, 15, or 20 years at 6.99% interest rate and 0% dealer fees. Credit Human is passionate about allowing customers to save the planet while saving money – learn more here.

Contact Us to Get Customized Advice on Financing Your Solar Project

Solar panel installations can seem costly upfront, which can be discouraging. Fortunately, there are numerous financing options available that make solar panel installations more accessible and affordable.
We’re here to show you that your solar dreams are achievable and you can be on your way to a greener home in no time. After 18 years of experience in the solar industry, we have gained extensive knowledge about how to best support our customers.

Our team of solar experts are dedicated to finding the best option for your personal solar journey. Schedule a free, no-commitment consultation with a member of our experienced sales team here. We’d love to help you explore solar further!

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Advice for Financing Your Solar Project