The ongoing effort tackles one of the biggest power wasters in older housing--inefficient HVAC.
Renovate America, the nation’s largest provider of residential Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing, announced today that its HERO Program has now made possible the installation of energy-efficient home central air-conditioning units worth more than $415 million. More than half of the sales volume involves equipment that exceeds the minimum energy-efficiency standards of the federal ENERGY STAR® program.
The figures, announced on the eve of the International Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition(AHR Expo) in Las Vegas, show how HERO financing is expanding deployment of high-efficiency heating, ventilation and air conditioning equipment, which in turn lowers homeowners’ utility bills and reduces greenhouse-gas emissions.
By nature, products installed using HERO financing must carry a high government efficiency rating, such as those in the ENERGY STAR® program. To qualify for the ENERGY STAR® label, for example, central air-conditioning units must carry a minimum seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) rating of at least 15.
Since launching five years ago, HERO has helped install more than $415 million in air conditioning units. Of the total sales volume, over $215 million has involved equipment rated SEER 16 or higher – above the ENERGY STAR® minimum.
“No other financing source has helped me sell so many high-SEER units,” said Rusty Cochran, owner of We Care Plumbing, Heating, Air and Solar in Murrieta, California. “HERO is enabling consumers to save more on their utility bills while driving my company’s profitability and allowing me to hire more skilled contractors.”
The HVAC equipment financed by HERO is projected to save homeowners more than $750 million on their electricity bills over the useful life of the products installed.
HERO financing, which is already available in California and Missouri and which will expand to Florida later this year, enables owners to make home energy and efficiency upgrades and to pay for them over time at a fixed interest rate through an additional line item on their property taxes.
HERO addresses a problem conventional financing products have not solved. Each year, one in six homeowners replaces a system in the home that affects energy consumption. Most of the time, they choose a less efficient option based on upfront sticker price, instead of factoring in the total cost of owning and maintaining the product or system over the course of its useful life. HERO only finances efficient solutions, and converts the moment when a homeowner needs to replace or upgrade a failing system into an opportunity to upgrade a community’s housing stock.
HERO finances up to 100 percent of the home improvement, requiring no upfront cash outlay; HERO interest rates are competitive with other options; the term of the financing is based on the useful life of the product, up to 25 years, spreading costs out over time; and HERO keeps other existing credit sources available to help meet goals and emergencies. Moreover, interest on HERO payments may be tax-deductible, and the upgrades themselves may increase home values.
Contractors interested in learning more about how to grow their businesses using HERO financing can visit www.heroprogram.com/contractors. For contractors attending AHR, please stop by North Hall, booth N7337, to learn more.
About Renovate America
Renovate America has built a tech-enabled market platform for home improvement and commercial retrofits that helps communities make their housing stock more efficient while providing small businesses with tools to grow. In addition to financing home improvements through an unsecured lending product, Benji, Renovate America offers communities the HERO Program. HERO is the leading residential Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program in the U.S. and has financed more than $2 billion of home improvements in partnership with local governments. HERO is on track to save its customers nearly $3.5 billion in energy and water bills, and has created over 18,000 local clean-energy jobs. Renovate America has built the world’s largest green bond platform, with a volume of originations that enables securitization of HERO PACE bonds multiple times a year, attracting international investment to meet U.S. clean-energy objectives.