City gives homeowners access to innovative HERO financing to safely make hurricane repairs and resiliency home improvements – with no upfront cost
CAPE CORAL, Fla., Sept. 28, 2017
– In the aftermath of the recent hurricane emergency felt across the state, one Florida city has already taken swift action to aid local residents’ recovery and preparedness efforts.
Earlier this week, the Cape Coral City Council approved a robust hurricane response package for residents, including access to an innovative form of financing called HERO. HERO Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing empowers homeowners to make energy efficient, renewable energy, and hurricane-resiliency improvements and pay for the upgrades over time through a voluntary assessment on their property tax bill.
HERO, a public-private partnership between the Florida Development Finance Corporation (FDFC) and Renovate America, is the nation’s largest PACE financing option. Through its adoption of HERO, Cape Coral has joined in FDFC’s mission to bring the most comprehensive consumer safeguards and lowest interest rates in the PACE industry to their community, to make Florida more energy efficient and hurricane-resistant. To date, 68 Florida communities across the state have enabled HERO financing, and it is currently available to over 1.75 million households – nearly a quarter of the state.
Eligible improvements include storm shutters, roofing and windows, roof-to-wall connections and other products that can protect against wind damage and may lower insurance premiums. HERO also can finance residential energy and efficiency upgrades like rooftop solar and high-efficiency HVAC, which may lower utility bills and make homes more comfortable. HERO also uses a data-driven contractor quality rating system that tracks customer satisfaction and removes contractors that do not maintain good or excellent ratings.
"As our community continues to rebuild from Hurricane Irma, PACE financing options are needed now more than ever as a means for property owners to make repairs quickly and protect against future storms," said Melvin Kennedy of Kennedy Construction Groups LLC
, which services Southwest Florida. "HERO’s top-notch consumer safeguards and contractor rating system ensure Cape Coral residents have one less thing to worry about during this stressful time and can focus on what’s most important: keeping their family safe."
Since HERO launched five years ago, over 100,000 homeowners have used it to finance more than $2.6 billion in energy and efficiency improvements throughout the United States. By stimulating home renovation activity, HERO financing increases demand for contractor services and boosts the local economy – all at no cost to government budgets. Local contractors interested in learning more about HERO and/or becoming a registered HERO provider should visit renovateamerica.com/contractors
Florida homeowners who would like to know if HERO is available in their area should visit renovateamerica.com/financing/hero/communities
About Renovate America
Renovate America offers a tech-enabled financing platform for home improvements that empowers communities to modernize and make their housing stock more efficient, while giving small businesses the tools they need to grow. In addition to financing home improvements through an unsecured lending product, Benji, Renovate America offers communities HERO financing. HERO is the leading residential Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program in the U.S. and has been used by over 100,000 homes to make energy and efficiency improvements. It is estimated that HERO is on track to save billions of dollars in energy and water bills, and has created over 20,000 local trade jobs that cannot be offshored or automated. Renovate America has built the world’s largest green bond platform, with a volume of originations that enables securitization of HERO PACE bonds multiple times a year, attracting international investment to meet U.S. clean-energy objectives.
About the Florida Development Finance Corporation
The FDFC is a special development finance authority created by State Legislation under Chapter 288, Part X of the Florida Statues and formed as a 501(c)(4) not-for-profit corporation. Although not a State Agency, the FDFC is a state-wide conduit issuer that provides access to capital for project finance. Over the past 20 years, the FDFC has assisted over 90 Florida-based businesses to finance over $1.2 billion in tax-exempt & taxable bonds for qualified projects and borrowers.