by Zachary Shahan
As we’ve reported numerous times, in places where solar leasing is offered, the large majority of people who go solar decide to do so through the solar leasing model. There are various reasons for that*, but I think the biggest has got to be the $0-down or close-to-$0-down incentive. People don’t like putting their money into something up front — they’d often rather drag the payment process on for as long as possible, even if that means paying more in the long run (note: this is generally not my approach). The interesting news is that Admirals Bank is confident that it is offering an even better deal (nationwide) than solar leasing companies, while still not making you put any money down.
On its website, Admirals Bank notes that homeowners can borrow up to $40,000 for a renewable energy project. On that same page, it offers a table comparing solar leasing/PPAs to the purchasing of a solar system through Admirals Alternatives financing.
Here’s the table:
I was curious to find out a few more things about the home solar loans, so I called up Admirals Bank this week. Here are some more details from my call with one of the loan reps:
The loan is indeed available nationwide (something I hadn’t seen written anywhere on the website but had heard from a commenter).
The program has been in place for about 1 year.
To qualify for the $25,000 loan, you have to have a credit score of 650 or above. You also must have a debt to credit ratio of 45% or better.
There’s also the possibility of getting a $40,000 loan, but you must have a credit score of 700 or above for that.
No equity is needed to get the loan.
The interest rate on the loan is 4.95%.
The length of the loan is flexible, anywhere from 5 to 20 years.
The check is made out to you, the homeowner. Once receiving the money, you have 6 months to have the work completed. Someone will actually come out to verify that the project is completed once you say it is.
So, those are the details on Admirals Bank home solar loans. If I were about to go solar, I’d definitely do the math on this one and compare it to any solar leasing/PPA options or other loans that were available in my area. I’m sure it’s the best option for financing a solar system in many situations… perhaps yours?
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*There are other potential incentives to going solar through a solar leasing company — not having to worry about maintenance or monitoring and not having to deal with the tax paperwork, for example. Additionally, solar leasing companies can take advantage of some governmental incentives that you might not be able to take advantage of, and will presumably pass those savings on to you.
**Full disclosure: this article was not sponsored in any way. It came about through a tip from a reader.
About the Author
Zachary Shahan is the director of CleanTechnica, the most popular cleantech-focused website in the world, and Planetsave, a world-leading green and science news site. He has been covering green news of various sorts since 2008, and he has been especially focused on solar energy, electric vehicles, and wind energy for the past four years or so. Aside from his work on CleanTechnica and Planetsave, he’s the Network Manager for their parent organization – Important Media – and he’s the Owner/Founder of Solar Love, EV Obsession, and Bikocity. To connect with Zach on some of your favorite social networks, go to ZacharyShahan.com and click on the relevant buttons.