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ABOUT DELAWARE C-PACE

Program Overview

Welcome to the Delaware C-PACE program website. Whether you’re a property owner, a developer, contractor, mortgage holder, or capital provider—or you simply want to learn more about Delaware C-PACE—the goal of this website is to provide you with the information you need to take advantage of this innovative new program.

Background

The Delaware Voluntary Clean Energy Financing Program, created in 2018 by the Delaware Energy Act, designates the Delaware Sustainable Energy Utility (DESEU) as the statewide program administrator under its Energize Delaware trade name. Nationwide, such programs are generally known as “Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy Programs.” In Delaware it will be referred to as Delaware C-PACE or simply C-PACE.

What is Delaware C-PACE?

C-PACE is designed to help qualifying commercial, industrial, agricultural, nonprofit and multifamily (with five or more units) property owners access long term financing for the installation of qualifying energy improvements. Such improvements may include any construction, renovation or retrofitting of energy efficient technology, clean energy systems, or qualifying waste heat recovery technologies that are permanently fixed to qualifying commercial property.

C-PACE is a win-win program that, aside from lowering the utility expenses and increasing the value of improved properties, advances important public policy goals that include reducing energy and water costs, increasing renewable energy deployment, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and creating local jobs.

C-PACE financing is provided by private capital providers in an open market. The financing is secured through a voluntary benefit assessment and assignable lien that is levied against the owner’s property. Repayment to the capital provider is facilitated in accordance with a standard agreement between each participating county that has joined the program.

The financing term is based on the useful life of the improvements and can extend up to 25 years. The financing can cover up to 100 percent of a building’s project cost and often requires no money down. In many cases the project’s annual energy savings will outweigh the annual C-PACE payments, which creates positive cash flow for the owner.

This combination of benefits means C-PACE property owners can make substantial upgrades to their buildings and, in most cases, the upgraded building is more valuable after a C-PACE project has been completed.

In Delaware, as in many other states, C-PACE is also available to commercial real estate developers who design and construct new buildings that chose to install equipment that exceeds the requirements of Delaware’s new construction energy code. In other states with C-PACE programs, such financing has proven to be very attractive to developers who use it to reduce total financing cost or fill gaps in their financing plan.

Who Benefits?

C-PACE benefits a broad range of stakeholders that utilize C-PACE financing:

  • Property owners reduce their energy costs and may improve the value of their building—all with no upfront, out-of-pocket costs.
  • Contractors close more projects and grow their business.
  • Developers fill gaps in their financing plan.
  • Capital providers receive new secure financing opportunities.
  • Mortgage holders benefit from an improved asset. In addition, the increased cash flow of a typical project may strengthen the owner’s repayment ability and reduce mortgage default risk.
  • The community enjoys new investment, and citizens may enjoy more job opportunities, greater energy savings, and improved air quality—all financed with private capital, and not taxpayer dollars.
Who Administers the Program?

The Delaware Sustainable Energy Utility (DESEU) is the Delaware C-PACE program administrator. The DESEU operates various programs under the trade name Energize Delaware.

What is the Program Administration Fee?

The Delaware C-PACE program is self-financed through program fees charged to participating property owners.

For projects that are financed, a one-time program administration and county servicing fee will be charged to each project by the program administrator at financing closing.

  • Program administration fee: A one-time fee equal to 2.5 percent of the project finance amount, not to exceed $75,000 per project, is applied to each financed project.
  • County servicing fee: A one-time fixed fee, as defined in the following fee schedule, is applied to each financed project.
Benefit Assessment Finance Term (years) One-Time County Servicing Fee ($)
1 to 10 $700
11 to 15 $1000
16 to 20 $1,250
21 to 25 $1,500

These fees are typically included in the total financed amount and are due only if a project is successfully financed. Such fees shall be remitted by the capital provider to the program administrator and county respectively within 10 days of the closing. Project financing interest rates and any applicable capital provider closing fees will be set by the property owner’s capital provider.

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