Maximizing the Use of Commercial PACE Financing for Affordable Multifamily Housing

For low-income apartment residents who spend more than three times the average in energy costs, savings from energy efficiency upgrades can help them manage the cost of rent and live healthier lives. However, multifamily building owners often need access to financing to cover the upfront costs of energy improvements.

One financing mechanism for energy efficiency improvements that has been gaining traction in the commercial building market is Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE.) However, of the over 1,000 C-PACE transactions closed to date, only 15 are in affordable multifamily housing properties. Can C-PACE be more effectively used to make efficiency upgrades in this underserved sector?

During this webinar hosted by the Sustainability in Affordable Housing Lender Learning Network, we answered this question based on findings from the new report “Commercial PACE for Affordable Multifamily Housing” and based on the experiences gained in closing those few successful projects.

Peter Adamczyk and Elizabeth Chant from Vermont Energy Investment Corporation and a lead authors of the report, shared takeaways from the report on why uptake of financing efficiency through C-PACE has been slow in the multifamily sector and how the sector can better utilize C-PACE. Mark Thielking, Executive Director of EnergizeNY, provided details on how EnergizeNY has successfully worked with multifamily building owners in NY to finance efficiency projects through C-PACE. And Bracken Hendricks, CEO of Urban Ingenuity, gave examples of successful multifamily C-PACE projects and explained why, given many options for financing efficiency, C-PACE could play an especially key role in increasing the affordability and stability of multifamily properties.

March 28, 2018

The Sustainability in Affordable Housing Lender Learning Network aims to help more CDFIs and other lenders play a larger role in financing clean energy in affordable multifamily homes nationwide. Lenders involved include Enterprise Community Partners, Community Preservation Corporation, Community Investment Corporation, National Housing Trust, and LISC. They have partnered with the Energy Efficiency for All initiative, which includes Natural Resources Defense Council and Elevate Energy.