US manufacturer SunPower has secured $42 million that will be aimed at escalating its solar leasing program. The California-based company now has 20,000 American households signed up for solar leasing, a trend initially led by others that SunPower has jumped into.
This $42 financial investment comes from Hannon Armstrong Sustainable Infrastructure Capital, Inc. (NYSE: HASI) in the form of “non-recourse debt.” Non-recourse debt, according to Wikipedia, “is secured by a pledge of collateral, typically real property, but for which the borrower is not personally liable. If the borrower defaults, the lender/issuer can seize the collateral, but the lender’s recovery is limited to the collateral. Thus, non-recourse debt is typically limited to 50% or 60% loan-to-value ratios, so that the property itself provides ‘overcollateralization’ of the loan.”
The bottom line, however, is simply that SunPower sees solar leasing as a good continued business strategy.
“The SunPower Lease program offers our customers financing under highly competitive terms for their SunPower solar panels, the most efficient on the market today. When coupled with our unprecedented level of energy assurance, the SunPower Lease program delivers more value to the homeowner,” said SunPower CFO Chuck Boynton. “Among our portfolio of financing options, solar lease remains one of the more popular choices by consumers and our innovative partnership with Hannon Armstrong will allow us to further fund the program’s growth this year.”
California installed more solar power in 2013 than in the previous 30 years combined, and a lot of that was installed via solar leasing.