Mass. Seeks Financial Partner for Solar Loan Program

The Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MTC) issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) from consumer-lending institutions interested in managing a new $1.25 million solar loan fund.

MTC administers the state’s Renewable Energy Trust, which is providing the funding to make zero interest loans available to income-eligible borrowers installing solar panels on their homes. The Massachusetts Heating Energy Assistance and Tax Relief Act of 2005 directed MTC to establish this program to enable low, moderate and upper-moderate income individuals to tap into solar energy. “This is an exciting opportunity for us to help people contribute to a cleaner energy future by making solar electricity more accessible to more homeowners across the state,” said Warren Leon, director of the Renewable Energy Trust. “We look forward to selecting an outstanding institution to be our partner in this important new program to bring the benefits of renewable energy to people of all incomes throughout Massachusetts.” The Renewable Energy Trust is committing $1.25 million for this program, which will cover the interest on the loans that would otherwise be due by the borrowers. The Trust seeks a financial partner committed to providing loans with minimum terms of seven years (preference for 10-15 year loans); competitive pricing on interest rates and fees; and a track record of servicing residents across the state. Responses to the RFP are due by March 27, 2006. The loan program, once established in late spring, will be made available for any solar electricity systems placed in service after March 1, 2006. Homeowners may also continue to apply for the Trust’s existing Small Renewables Initiative rebates that can cover 25-50% of the cost of installing solar systems. More than 320 solar projects have received funding from the Trust during the past several years.
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