U.S. residential solar financing is expected to hit $5.7 billion in 2016, up from $1.3 billion in 2012, according to a new report.Â Much of this is expected to come through companies such as SolarCity â€“ a third party financing company that helps make solar energy more accessible and affordable to the public.
â€œPrior to 2010, there were few residential third-party ownership (TPO) vendors,â€ said Shayle Kann, GreenTech Media vice president and author of the report. â€œSince then, the success of companies such as SolarCity, Sunrun, and SunPower has led to a spate of new entrants into the market. Today, we count at least ten TPO companies operating, and a number of others still getting off the ground.â€
So far, $3.1 billion has been provided by investors for more than 28 funds. US Bancorp is responsible for a good portion of that, giving $1.35 billion toward 14 different funds.
â€œThese vendors differ in their services, their relationships with solar installers, their geographic footprints, their financing sources, and their customers acquisition strategies,â€ said Kann. â€œAs a result, there is now a vibrant competitive market for third-party owned residential solar in the U.S.â€
On top of President Obamaâ€™s recent push for clean energy in his State of the Union address, solar energy also increased by 44% in the third quarter of 2012. As more people become aware of solar price drops and residential financing options, we can only expect these numbers to keep growing.
Image CC licensed by Kevin Krejci