I like solar power. Who doesn’t? We have a giant nuclear reactor in the sky and we should make better use of it for energy purchases. However the “policy makers” in Washington continue to screw up the solar equation.
For years, the 70-year-old Vista, California homeowner had paid about $990 every month. But in early 2015, after solar panels were installed on her roof, Chavez, a retiree, discovered a total of $1,500, a sum she couldn’t afford, had been paid from her bank account.
Chavez said the company that pitched her on the panels, Fidelity Home Energy, did not explain how expensive they would be, nor suggest that she consider a different means of financing other than the loan they offered, which has a 10.32% interest rate and gets paid as part of her mortgage bill.
They did tell her she’d get a $10,000 tax break – but not that such an incentive is useless to people at her income level…
…But perhaps most important is the fact that PACE loans take priority over the mortgage in situations like foreclosures, a feature that subverts the entire structure of the home lending process. For Chavez, that means that when she fell behind on her mortgage payments, she suddenly owed an entire year’s worth of PACE payments — $4,115.54.
The loans are attached to the property, not to the homeowner.