Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE)

What is PACE?

Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) makes it easier to install solar by providing low cost, long-term project financing. PACE-financed projects can include energy efficiency improvements, renewable energy systems, or a combination of the two. PACE financing works in the following way: a building or homeowner contacts the local PACE administrator, who secures financing for the project. The building owner then repays that financing over a period of multiple years through a special assessment on the owner’s property tax bill or utility bill.

Whereas other forms of project financing require multiple payments to multiple parties, PACE financing recipients need only pay their existing tax or utility bill. And because PACE repayment is simply special assessments tied to the property, PACE-funded projects – and payments – are easily transferred when a property changes hands.

How does PACE work?

PACE is a national initiative, but each program is launched and run locally in order to meet the unique market needs of each regional market. State legislation must be passed in order to allow municipalities to run PACE programs. California launched the first PACE financing program in 2008. Since then, it has spread to other states. Here are a few major features you’ll find in all PACE programs:

  • PACE programs are voluntary.
  • These programs can cover 100 percent of the upgrade’s hard and soft costs.
  • Long-term financing may extend up to 20 years.
  • It can be combined with all federal, utility and local incentive programs.
  • Energy projects are permanently affixed to a property.
  • The project assessments are filed with the local municipality as a lien to the property.

Can I get PACE?

PACE legislation varies state by state.  Some states have enabled residential PACE programs, and some states have only enabled PACE for commercial properties.  To learn more about the status of PACE in your state, visit PACENation.