Financing Model for Home Renewables Spreads
New York Times
A method of financing renewable energy and energy-efficiency improvements through higher property taxes is spreading rapidly.
According to the Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency, nine states have put this type of system in place — with Louisiana to follow in August and Maryland in October.
By enabling homeowners to pay for clean energy projects through increased property taxes, the financing model allows them to avoid the high up-front costs often associated with these projects. (Typically, the municipality, which can borrow at low rates, covers the up-front costs, and then a homeowner provides reimbursement through taxes.) The system also allows homeowners to pass on the cost of such improvements to future owners, if the house is sold. Sonoma County in California has enacted a particularly successful local program.