Ipsun is proud to be the company to bring Virginia its first-ever C-PACE financed solar projects. As a local Fairfax-based company, Ipsun is thrilled that Rocklands Barbeque Restaurant in Arlington, VA has chosen Ipsun to design and install their two solar energy systems—and that Rocklands is leading the business community towards lowering carbon emissions.
The C-PACE model gives business owners a long-term, fixed-rate financing tool that requires no upfront cost, helping the Commonwealth’s goal to transition off fossil fuels by 2050.
During the exploration phase of Rocklands’ solar project, Ipsun VP Joe Marhamati explained the various financing options to Rocklands' owner, John Snedden. Working with Marhamati and Scott Dicke, Director of Mid-Atlantic Sales & Support Services at C-PACE administrator Sustainable Real Estate Solutions, Snedden saw the numbers and decided that using C-PACE financing through Arlington Community Federal Credit Union worked best for his business.
The C-PACE model was attractive to Snedden because it allows the project to go forward without an initial up-front payment, yet Rocklands retains ownership of the solar energy systems. This enables Snedden to keep the Solar Renewable Energy Credits to sell in Virginia’s upcoming SREC market, and take advantage of the 26% federal tax credit.
Marhamati said, “Our analysis showed the combination of energy cost savings over the life of the solar equipment and the tax benefit would exceed $280,000, which far exceeds the costs of the system, and the solar array will pay for itself in short order. This is our first project to use C-PACE financing and we are very impressed with both the benefits and the ease of use.”
Rocklands Barbeque will leverage C-PACE financing to pay for roof upgrades and install two solar PV systems totaling 44kW on two adjacent properties located at 3461 and 3471 Washington Boulevard in Arlington. These are the first two C-PACE projects in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Snedden said, “The solar PV systems will lower our utility bills and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Plus, 100% financing from Arlington C-PACE helped us avoid using cash on hand. That’s the right thing for our business and community.”
Arlington C-PACE is administered by Sustainable Real Estate Solutions (SRS). SRS streamlines the management of the data-intensive C-PACE technical and financial underwriting process, which makes using the C-PACE model easy for business owners. SRS’s Investor Confidence Project-credentialed quality assurance methodology has facilitated more than $475 million in C-PACE financing nationwide.
Scott Dicke, SRS Director of Mid-Atlantic Sales & Support Services, said, “It was great to work with Joe Marhamati and the Ipsun Solar team. The Rocklands project is an important proof-of-concept for small businesses with sustainability goals and that want the financial flexibility offered by C-PACE financing. C-PACE covers up to 100% of a project's capital costs, a key distinguishing feature from a traditional loan. We hope that this “first" helps build momentum for new C-PACE programs in cities and counties that have not yet used C-PACE, and greater participation in the ones that are launched and live.”
Arlington C-PACE was spearheaded by the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy (AIRE) to advance public policy goals in Arlington’s Community Energy Plan. Those include reducing energy costs, increasing renewable energy deployment, lowering greenhouse gas emissions, and creating local jobs.
Jim Wilmot, VP Lending at Arlington Community Federal Credit Union, added, “This was an exciting opportunity to help Rocklands Barbecue lower both operating costs and the building’s carbon footprint. C-PACE financing was key to the success of this project, and we look forward to helping many more small business customers take advantage of C-PACE Financing.”