Monday, August 25, 2014

PACE Financing

So regular readers of this blog know that I had some reservations about PACE, the property assessed clean energy.  The way it works is that instead of being a loan to make environmentally beneficial improvements to your home or building, it is assessed as an additional property tax paid off over an agreed period of years.  In most cases, if you sell your house, you sell it with the assessment, although there are issues still FHA supported mortgages, this does not affect most homeowners.  

At the time, I spoke in favor of North Bay Village's participation in the PACE program as a "better than nothing" solution and it is not perfect but it's a damn sight better than it was presented to us.  In conversation with Mark Ogres who is promoting the PACE program, I have found out how well it can fit with the specific issues we face on our islands, particularly in the hardening of our homes' roofs, seawalls, hurricane protection and the host of issues associated with living in hurricane prone area.  

Mark wrote to me and said:
North Bay Village now has available a powerful and economical fund to address issues in the Village. The PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy Fund) is mostly noted for funding of energy related needs such as new air conditioners and solar energy. Unique to Florida the fund can pay for many things related to protection from hurricanes, most importantly to North Bay Village this means: re-roofing, hurricane windows and shutters, elevating (raising up) buildings, seawall replacement and shoring up of docks/piers.
The money is not credit based, it funds improvements 100% and it is tax deduct able.  The only requirements are: 10% equity n property, current on mortgage and taxes and no bankruptcy in three years.  The money is a self-imposed assessment that goes on your taxes and carries forward with the property.  This would mean for a seawall you could put it in, pay nothing for almost 1 1/2 years and then make an annual payment once a year for 5-25 years or until it is sold. For roofing and other hurricane protection measures many find that with the rebates from the power company and the savings from insurance - it works out great. State required savings on insurance premiums, including Citizens Insurance, can be as much as 70%.
You guys know me.  I challenged him each point and you know what, this stuff is good.  I'm looking forward to talking with him more.  I've invited him to post on the Face Book Group, North Bay Village Residents Speak,  and you're  going to hear a lot more about this program soon.  

Kevin Vericker
August 25, 2014

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