An innovative, government-sponsored program aimed at funding energy-saving home improvements has drawn praise from powerful supporters, including President Obama. But complaints from a growing number of homeowners, lenders and realtors in California suggest the financing is making homes more difficult to sell and disrupting the mortgage market.
More than 50,000 California households have signed up for Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing since state legislators passed a law in 2008 allowing residents to borrow money for such things as solar panels and energy-efficient windows. The financing method, authorized by cities and counties, and funded by venture capital-backed startups like Renovate America Inc, Renew Financial LLC and Ygrene Energy Fund Inc, is then paid off through special assessments on property tax bills.
Because the improvements stay with the home, and subsequent owners will reap the benefits of them, the assessments are intended to remain with the property in the event of a sale.View Article