City of Santa Barbara Joins CaliforniaFIRST PACE Program, Helping Homeowners to Finance Clean Energy Upgrades and Give the City a New Resource to Reach 100% Clean Energy Goal
Renew Financial, a leading clean energy and home improvement finance company, announced today that the City of Santa Barbara has joined the CaliforniaFIRST PACE financing program and will make the program available to City residents in the near future. This action is a crucial positive step toward Santa Barbara meeting its commendable goal of exclusively using renewable energy sources by 2030. CaliforniaFIRST helps property owners to finance the full cost of home upgrades such as rooftop solar panels, energy and water efficiency, and even seismic resilience. Homeowners then repay those costs over time as a line item on their property tax bill. By eliminating the upfront cost barrier for environmentally-friendly home upgrades, CaliforniaFIRST makes these upgrades accessible to more Santa Barbara homeowners than ever before. Now, nearly 24,000 Santa Barbara homeowners will be able to use CaliforniaFIRST to go solar, save money on their utility bills, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and help the City of Santa Barbara reach its clean energy goal.
“This is a great opportunity to make it easier for our residents to upgrade their homes and reduce our community’s greenhouse gas emissions,” said Santa Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider. “The City of Santa Barbara is committed to using 100% renewable energy by 2030. Authorizing Open PACE, including the CaliforniaFIRST PACE program, will enable local homeowners to help us reach that goal.”
To date, Renew Financial estimates that, over the life of the financed upgrades, the renewable energy and energy efficient products it has financed will have:
Cut total greenhouse gas emissions by 2.3 million metric tons – equivalent to the yearly emissions of 485,000 cars
Conserved 877 million gallons of water – enough water for 48 million showers
Realized over $1.5 billion in energy savings
Created more than 15,000 jobs across 15 states
Funded over 83,600 projects
“CaliforniaFIRST means that homeowners in the City of Santa Barbara can do their part to reduce greenhouse emissions, all while reducing their utility bills,” said Jeremy Hutman, Senior Regional PACE Director for Renew Financial. “We are proud to help the City move toward a future powered entirely by clean energy. By increasing demand for home upgrades, CaliforniaFIRST will not only reduce greenhouse gas emissions, we will also help local contractors create jobs here in Santa Barbara—jobs that can’t be outsourced. It is a win-win for the community.”
About Renew Financial
Renew Financial Group, LLC (“Renew Financial”) is one of the nation’s leading home improvement financing companies. Renew Financial administers and provides multiple financing products across the country, with programs available in several states, including the administration of Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) programs operating in California and Florida. PACE is a financing tool enabled by state and local governments that provides homeowners and business owners with access to private capital to finance the entire cost of renewable energy, energy efficiency, water conservation, seismic, and wind mitigation upgrades, and then pay for those upgrades on their property tax bill. PACE was named by Scientific American as one of the “top 20 ideas that can change the world.” PACE is a job-creating policy tool that has enjoyed bipartisan support, having been championed in state legislatures by members from both sides of the aisle.