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Solar Financing & Solar Loans

Updated January 17, 2017

Thinking of going solar? Now is a great time. Prices are at an all-time low and the 30% Federal Tax Credit is still in effect. Not everyone can buy a solar system outright with cash, but financing options are available.

Even with a moderate-interest loan, you would still reap long-term financial savings. And when you buy or finance your system, you keep the 30% tax credit rather than giving it to the leasing company. You'll also own your system once it's paid off, getting free electricity year after year.

What are my solar financing options?

There's a variety of options available to homeowners interested in adding solar to their property. Depending on your credit score and the option you choose, interest rates could be in the low single digits or up to more than 20%.

Note: Wholesale Solar believes these options are good fits for typical solar buyers. We mention several lenders by name because we have evaluated their suitability, but we do not receive any compensation for our recommendations.

Credit Cards

Usually instant approval. Very high APR. Apply online from multiple providers or at your bank

RocketLoans Online Personal Loan

Approval in less than 24 hours. APR depends on credit. 36 or 60 month terms. No preypament penalty. Possible Same Day Funding. Apply online after you have a quote from us.

Personal Bank Loans

Approval in 2-3 weeks. Moderate APR. Both secured and unsecured loans available. Apply at local credit union or bank.

Home Equity Loans

Approval in 4-6 weeks. Lower APR. Uses home equity as collatoral. Requires home appraisal. Potential tax write-off. Apply at a local bank.

Title 1 Home Improvement Loan

Approval in 1-2 months. Best APR. Long, stringent application process. Government-backed. Potential tax write-off. Find a local lender or ask us about Home Loan Investment Bank for better rates.
Download the Application as PDF.

Next steps: Ready to apply?

We've partnered with two online lenders to offer you easy online applications.

Please be sure you've spoken to one of our technicians first and have a quote in hand before you apply for financing. If you misjudge your solar needs and apply for the wrong amount of credit, you may negatively affect your credit score with a second application or be denied financing altogether.

RocketLoans Logo
  • 24-Hour approval
  • Possible Same Day Funding
  • Rate depends on credit

Are there loans specifically for solar and renewable energy projects?

Sometimes. It depends on your area, your income, and your homeowner status. These are different for every applicant, and they tend to be more complex than traditional loans, often requiring a professional home energy audit and detailed plans prior to approval.

For more information, see the following examples:

Why finance instead of lease?

Leasing solar has become a very common practice, but it benefits the solar company more than the homeowner. We recommend against leasing your system because:

  • The lease payment may be hinged to the rising cost of electricity and will rise accordingly.
  • The lease contract you sign may interfere with your ability to sell your house, as the house buyer also has to qualify in order for you to transfer the contract to them.
  • The lessor gets the benefit of the federal tax credit and any other financial incentives.
  • Learn more.

If you're speaking to a solar leasing company already, be sure to ask them these questions:

  • Is the lease for purchase of electricity or for lease of solar equipment?
  • Does the lease show the total dollar cost of the entire lease term?
  • How will the lease be transferred to future homeowners?
  • What future costs can the leasing company add at end of lease term?