On Thursday, SolarCity announced a new solar loan program that allows customers in 14 states to immediately pay less for solar power than they do on conventional utility bills. The program will also allow solar customers to pocket thousands of dollars from applicable tax credits.
“We can now offer a loan that makes it possible for many customers to pay less for solar from day one, and still receive thousands back in tax credits on top of that,” said SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive. “This program will allow thousands of additional customers across the U.S. to install solar this year and start saving money immediately, and we expect to work with multiple lenders that will allow us to expand to several new states by the end of the month with the same great terms for our customers.”
How is this possible? In essence, SolarCity has installed so many solar panels in America that it was able to negotiate “extremely favorable terms” – in the words of their press release – for their customers. The company installed more residential solar in 2015 than their next 50 competitors combined, and the sheer volume of that achievement has put them in a plum position to improve their loan model.
These new loans will replace SolarCity’s MyPower product, which helped provide more loans in 2015 than any other solar installer, with a range of new options, including fixed payments and shorter terms.
“Customers get interested when you can allow them to pay less for solar than they pay for utility bills, but many also want to own the system and keep the tax credits,” Tim Newell, SolarCity’s Vice President of Financial Products, told Planet Experts in an email. “These new loans allow them to do both.”
According to a company press release, new loan features will also include:
- 10-year loans with annual percentage rates as low as 2.99 percent.
- 20-year loans with annual percentage rates as low as 4.99 percent.
- Customers can prepay their entire balance or prepay a portion of their loan to lower their monthly payments at any time, with no fees or penalties.
- Installation of a Nest Thermostat at no additional cost for qualifying customers.
SolarCity’s new solar loans are available today in Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Texas and Washington, D.C., and the company expects to announce new locations soon. Homeowners can learn more by visiting http://www.solarcity.com/residential.