The Best California Energy Efficiency IncentivesThe best California energy efficiency incentives for our area are PACE, HERO, SMUD, CaliforniaFirst, and Ygrene. It benefits a homeowner to know a little bit about each of them. Here’s a quick list of the key info about each of them:
- PACE: PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) offers loans to make energy upgrades accessible and affordable for homeowners. Keep in mind, though, that PACE loans are linked to the home itself, not to the homeowner. If you decide to sell your home before the loan is paid in full, the new homeowner will need to take responsibility for the loan. You can learn more about the PACE financing program HERE.
- HERO: The HERO financing program, which stands for Home Energy Renovation Opportunity, is a government-approved loan program to support water and energy efficient upgrades to local homes. Homeowners can get up to 100% of the cost of upgrades covered. Terms for HERO loans can be as long as 25 years. Learn more about the HERO financing program HERE.
- SMUD: The Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) offers rebates and money back opportunities for homeowners who buy energy efficient appliances, like heat pumps, water heaters, smart thermostats, clothes washers, and room air conditioners. To qualify, homeowners have to install appliances on a SMUD-approved list of options. You will want to get help from your local contractor for this. Learn more about SMUD incentives and rebates HERE.
- CaliforniaFirst (CalFIRST): CalFIRST is a financing program to help with the upfront costs of installing energy efficienct appliances and making home upgrades. What’s unique about CalFIRST is their payment programs are very flexible, typically between 5 and 30 years. If you move before paying off your loan, the outstanding amount can be transferred to your new home, paid via your property tax bill. Learn more about the CaliforniaFIRST financing program HERE.
- Ygrene: The Ygrene Energy Fund offers 100% of homeowner financing for residential home upgrades that meet set standards of energy efficiency, renewable energy, and in some areas water conservation and storm protection. Application processing only takes 30 minutes so if you’re ready to start up a home upgrade project, Ygrene may be the best choice for you. Learn more about the Ygrene Energy Fund HERE.