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Increased Loan Limits and Expanded Accessibility: Connecticut Green Bank Empowers Homeowners with Smart-E Loan Updates
The Connecticut Green Bank is excited to announce enhancements to its Smart-E loan program, aimed at enabling more homeowners to access low-interest financing for energy-saving technologies. The maximum loan amount has been raised from $40,000 to a standard maximum of $50,000, with potential exceptions allowing loans of up to $75,000 with lender approval. This increase empowers homeowners to undertake comprehensive, higher-cost home improvements such as geothermal heat pumps and solar photovoltaic systems with battery storage.
As the Smart-E loan program celebrates its tenth anniversary in 2023, it has already supported over 7,000 families and deployed more than $110 million in loans. Recognizing the rising average loan amounts due to inflation, supply chain challenges, and labor issues, Bryan Garcia, the president and CEO of the Green Bank, emphasized the importance of the increased loan limit in providing greater access to low-interest financing for energy-saving projects.
Smart-E loans are available through a network of local community banks, credit unions, and a community development financial institution. Over 300 contractors participate in the program, serving communities throughout the state and offering a wide range of eligible energy-related improvements, including insulation, windows, solar panels, battery storage, air source heat pumps, and geothermal heat pumps.
In another program update, Smart-E loan lenders can now extend loans to homeowners with a FICO score as low as 580, down from the previously established minimum of 640. This change enables the program to reach homeowners with lower credit scores, expanding accessibility and promoting energy efficiency initiatives across the state.
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