Polis statement on Obama Administration’s move to increase homeowner access to renewable energy

WASHINGTON, D.C. – (RealEstateRama) — Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) released the following statement on the Obama Administration’s announcement of new guidelines for families to install renewable energy and water conservation projects in their homes.

With the updated guidelines, Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing will once again be available for all homes with mortgages issued by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). It will allow homeowners to complete energy projects immediately and pay back the cost over time through their property taxes.

“Solar energy has been a tremendous success in Colorado.  It has helped homeowners save money while reducing air pollution and carbon emissions,” Polis said.  “President Obama’s action to expand solar energy financing through PACE will allow more homeowners – especially, veterans as well as low and middle income families – to put solar panels on their home and save on their electricity bills, in turn creating jobs and combating climate change.  While the new FHA guidance fails to establish PACE loans as first liens like other tax liabilities, it does allow assessment to be transferred from one property owner to the next, even through a foreclosure sale.  Fundamentally, I feel that this new rule will help jump-start solar improvements in affordable housing. I call upon Freddie and Fannie to follow suit by issuing identical guidance around the larger segment of home financing that they impact. ”

Homeowners can get more information on the PACE program here.

Polis has been a leader in Congress in the fight to reopen PACE programs, working with members of Congress and discussing the necessary changes with President Obama. He has worked alongside Boulder and Eagle Counties, the national PACENOW coalition, and others on this issue including legal counsel and experts from Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA).

Polis introduced the Solar Expansion Distributed Generation Exponentially (EDGE) Act.  The bill would promote investment in small scale distributed generation solar projects, especially residential installation, across the U.S., and encourage long-term job growth in the solar industry.

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