The controversy surrounding a fast-growing clean energy loan program

“By the numbers, the home loan program PACE — or property assessed clean energy — is one of the most successful tools for helping property owners pay for otherwise expensive clean energy and environmental upgrades. PACE loans have shot up by more than one-third over the past year alone, to more than $4.6 billion.

Despite that, two governments in California abruptly shut down their PACE programs last summer, citing concerns from mortgage lenders and realtors. Lenders have issues with the fact that PACE loans get repayment priority — before the mortgage — and realtors say it’s harder to sell a property with a PACE loan attached.

Those concerns were fueled in part by a document put together for the city by the Bakersfield Association of Realtors. It detailed 47 homeowner complaints that included allegations of price gouging and efforts to mislead property owners about the cost”

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