American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA)
Property-Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing allows property owners to borrow money to pay for energy improvements. The amount borrowed is repaid over a period of years through monthly payments independent of property tax billing. Maine has authorized local governments to establish such programs. Not all local governments in Maine will choose to offer PACE financing; check the program to see if your municipality is offering the program (over 180 locations are participating, and Efficiency Maine maintains an up to date list).
The following eligibility requirements apply:
- Homeowners must have a debt-to-income ratio of 45% or less
- Property taxes and sewer charges must be up to date
- The property is not subject to a reverse mortgage
- The property may not have any outstanding notice of default, foreclosure, or delinquency on the mortgage
- The homeowner must have at least as much equity in the home as the amount of PACE loan
To participate, the homeowner must include in the scope of work at least one eligible prescriptive energy efficiency measure. Energy efficiency measures generally must meet or exceed U.S. EPA and Energy Star standards, or other standards approved by the Efficiency Maine Trust, or weatherization improvements that are approved by the Trust. Improvements that are recommended by the energy audit may be authorized. Renewable energy systems and electrical thermal storage systems must meet standards approved by the Trust.
Note that certain improvements may be eligible for rebates as well. The homeowner receives pre-approval for the PACE loan by submitting an application online and selects a contractor from a registered vendor list.