Renovate America, Greenworks Lending Partner on C-PACE Financing

Renovate America and Greenworks Lending said yesterday that they are partnering on Commercial PACE.

Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) is a vehicle in which property owners finance energy efficiency projects through loans from approved lenders. The loans are paid over long periods as line items on property tax bills. Commercial PACE (C-PACE), as the name implies, is aimed at non-residential facilities.

The organizations will work through Renovate America’s HERO program. The first joint implementation will be in Missouri and expand to California. Renovate America plans to expand HERO to Florida this year, the press release says. Greenworks Lending is active in Connecticut, Maryland, Rhode Island, Ohio, Texas and the District of Columbia.

The press release says that the partnership will create synergies in areas such as access to capital, relationships with contractors and experience in commercial lending, according to the companies.

In late January, Greenworks Lending said that RDM Pros, a retailer in Bryan, TX, became the first small commercial business to use PACE financing in the state. The press release said that the deal is an important milestone because most businesses in the Lone Star State are small. Previous implementation of C-PACE were to upgrade two non-profits and a large shopping center.

RDM Pros is installing a 20.8 KW solar energy system, replacing HVAC units, replacing a roof and upgrading LED lighting. Onital Energy is leading in the work, which is expected to enable $233,383 in savings. Greenworks Lending is providing $129,355 in financing, the press release says.

The Greater San Marcos Partnership said last week that Hays County, which is south of Austin, has become the 12th county in the state to establish a PACE program. The press release doesn’t overtly say that it is a C-PACE program, the commentary in the release makes it clear that the type it is.

Those in the PACE sector, like most other industry programs and segments, is unsure of what the new administration will bring. Renovate America spokesperson Greg Frost is confident that the concept is solid and will thrive, however. “What I can tell you is there’s obviously uncertainty about what the new political landscape means for clean energy policies, and it’s easy to see (a) the push for policy action on clean energy shifting more to states and cities, and/or (b) a more market-based approach to meeting environmental objectives,” he wrote in response to emailed questions from Energy Manager Today. “All the more reason, then, for communities to consider PACE financing, which already enjoys bipartisan – and nonpartisan – support.”

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