The Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) and the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) have unveiled Mass Solar Loan, a new program aimed at enabling Massachusetts residents to obtain low-interest loans to fund solar power systems.
The $30 million program is intended to directly connect homeowners with solar installers and lenders. Homeowners first receive a price quote from a pre-qualified Mass Solar Loan installer, and ultimately select an installer and sign a solar system installation contract. Once approved for a loan, the homeowner's preferred lender reserves support funds in the Mass Solar Loan portal. The lender then disburses 35% of the loan amount. After the solar system has been connected to the grid, the remaining 65% of the loan is disbursed.
Installers must meet MassCEC guidelines to participate in the program. Contractors that have previously attained ‘Expedited’ status under the Commonwealth Solar II rebate program are automatically eligible to participate in the program. MassCEC requires new installers to complete a pre-qualification process to become eligible to participate in the program.
The Mass Solar Loan program includes three incentives:
Interest Rate Buy Down: Reduces the annual interest rate paid by solar system owners by 3% below the typical rate charged by participating lenders. The buy down is available to all solar system owners regardless of income.
Loan Loss Reserve: Depending on a resident's credit score, lenders may be eligible for additional incentives to help their customers go solar. If a resident's credit record is less than perfect, they should ask a participating lender if they might qualify for the Loan Loss Reserve incentive.
Income-Based Loan Support: Consumers with annual household incomes of $80,240 and below may be eligible to have the Mass Solar Loan program pay a portion of their loan principal when the project is complete.
For more details, visit the program website here.