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PACE Loans: Are energy efficient improvements financially worth it? New data gives an answer!

In a new article, researchers Laurie Goodman and Jun Zhu of the Urban Institute describe the results of their study on the value of homes with PACE assessments:

…We compared the actual value of the 773 homes (adjusted downward for any PACE balance payoffs) to the resale value of similarly situated non-PACE homes. We used three different methodologies for this study to ensure robustness; our results consistently showed that PACE homes sold at a price of $199 to $8,882 over comparable non-PACE homes after taking into account the financing costs of the project.  This study differs from previous studies in two respects: it is the first study to look at the data of actual homes that have deployed PACE, then subsequently sold; and second it is the first study to determine not just whether the energy renovations added value to a home, but whether the value of the home energy renovation exceeds or falls short of its financing cost.

The authors concluded:

Thus, we see that regardless of the methodology used, the PACE premiums, after taking into account financing costs, ranged from $199 to $8,882. That is, the homeowner recovered more than their investment. By contrast, in most other improvements such as kitchen and bathroom remodeling, recent studies show the homeowner recovers only 60% or so.

Read the full article.