Customers have multiple payment options to purchase solar power for their home and business. Below is information on the most popular methods of payment in the solar industry.
Cash payment does not necessarily mean that a customer pays in cash. It is when a customer pays for their solar power system without the assistance of a loan. Cash payments deem the quickest returns because there is no added interest and fees that are often associated with loans.
Cash payments were a huge part of the solar industry for the past 10 years, but they are becoming less common as the working class continues to invest in solar power.
HE Solar takes no preference in how you purchase your solar power system and we are here to help you procure funds if needed.
If you are looking to finance then you have 2 choices. You can procure funds on your own or you can finance through our in-house credit partners. HE Solar recommends procuring your own loan under the following circumstances:
- You have enough equity in your home to pull a Home Equity Loan or refinance your home.
- You are an Austin Energy Customer and the cost of the project is less than $20,000. In this scenario, we recommend using the Velocity Credit Union Solar Loan Program.
- You have access to a low interest Home Improvement Loan.
Home Equity Loan and Home Refinancing
Use the county tax appraisal for a quick estimate of how much your home is worth. Otherwise, a professional appraisal will be required by the financial institution. Most credit unions use the following formula to calculate the approximate amount available for a home equity loan:
(A x 0.8) – B = C
A = Appraised amount, B = Total Owed on Home, C = Equity available for Home Equity Loan
Home refinancing is an option for those that are also looking to lock in a lower interest rate on their home. Homeowners may find a quicker return by refinancing, compared to Home Equity Loans, if the new interest rate is substantially lower than their original interest rate. Otherwise, refinancing may cost more due to other costs such as an application fee, title insurance, attorney review fees, and fees from loan origination.
Velocity Credit Union Solar Loan and other Home Improvement Loans
Velocity Credit Union has partnered with Austin Energy to provide financing to customers that want to take advantage of the Austin Energy Solar Rebate Program. Velocity works directly with Austin Energy to provide an affordable, low interest loan to homeowners that wish to invest in solar. The maximum loan amount is $20,000 and the interest rate varies (5 yr currently as low as 5.25%, 04/2015). Velocity also offers a Home Improvement loan for customers that are not participating in the Austin Energy Program or need more than $20,000 in the Austin Energy Program (5 yr currently as low as 6.25%, 04/2015).
Home Improvement Loans
Most banks and credit unions offer Home Improvement Loans. Home Improvement Loans may also be a viable option for smaller projects and homeowners that wish to finance a portion of the cost to install solar. Equity is not always required but may help with procuring a lower interest rate. Unsecured Home Improvement loans are usually available to borrowers for $7,500 or less.
HE Solar offers in-house financing for turn-key solar installations. We offer financing options for the 2 solar panel systems we install: SunPower and SolarWorld.
SunPower Financing Options
SunPower has partnered with Enerbank to offer low interest financing options to Sunpower Customers. The SunPower loan program is much like our SolarWorld Financing, but it is more customizable. SunPower customers have the option of using a Same-As-Cash (SAC) loan, a Reduced Interest Loan (RIL), or a combination of both.
Same As Cash (SAC) Loan
This loan is ideal for SunPower customers that can pay off the loan within 12 – 18 months. The SAC loan offers no interest and no payments as long as the loan is paid off within the term period. The SAC Loan can also be used in the combo loan for customers that want to pay for a portion of the system and finance the rest.
Reduced Interest Loan (RIL)
SunPower customers can finance their project with low monthly payments structured through the Reduced Interest Loan. Payment terms are available in 7, 10, and 12 year options.
The Combo loan is a combination of the SAL and RIL loan. Customers can choose a custom percentage of each loan. For example, a customer can finance 30% of their project through the SAC loan and the remaining 70% through the RIL loan. This is a common loan for solar customers because it bridges the tax incentive until the customer actually receives the tax credit the following year.
SolarWorld Financing Options
HE Solar has partnered with reputable financial institutions to offer financing for homeowners that wish to invest in solar power but lack the equity and cash to invest through other means. In-house financing is taking off in the solar industry thanks to affordable interest rates and long term loans. Here are a few loans we offer for customers who wish to purchase SolarWorld Solar Power Systems:
No Interest, No Payment
This loan is a great option for homeowners that can pay off the loan within 6 – 18 months. Make sure that the full amount is paid off within the payment period or you will owe the accumulated interest.
- 6 Month No Interest, No Payment, 17.99% – 26.99% APR
- 12 Month No Interest, No Payment, 17.99% – 26.99% APR
- 18 Month No Interest, No Payment, 17.99% – 26.99% APR
Reduced Rate APR
This loan is great for homeowners that need a lower monthly payment structure than the No Interest, No Payment Plan.
- 7 Year, 3.99% APR
- 10 Year, 5.99% APR
- 12 Year, 7.99%
The above information changes daily and is not guaranteed by HE Solar LLC. Please contact your lender for current rates and programs. Our in-house financing partners are also available to answer any questions on rates and billing structures. Lending programs and rates are always subject to change.