Solar Loans and Leases for Providers of Solar Panels and Batteries

Consumer Loans
  • Founded 2017
  • Staff 5-10
  • Headquarters New York
  • Lending model Solar Loans, Solar Equipment Leasing

As more homeowners consider energy independence and the importance of using renewables, specialty lenders and solar tech providers started to collaborate to offer affordable and flexible financing options putting home solar systems within anyone’s reach. 

Opportunity Overview

A solar loans provider from New York came to TurnKey Lender looking for a one-stop lending processes automation platform. The company works with numerous suppliers of solar equipment and installment services across the US. Some of the equipment and services providers in their partner network offer solar loans while others provide leases. Both credit products are extremely common in the home solar systems space.  

  1. Solar loans are personal loans secured by the solar panels as collateral and are used to cover the costs of purchasing and installing solar panels and batteries for energy storing. The person who applies for financing doesn’t get the funds, they are deposited directly to the account of the product provider in TurnKey Lender Customer’s partner network. 
  2. With a solar lease, the homeowner doesn’t own the installed equipment for an agreed-upon term and makes monthly payments to the lender/provider to use the solar energy the panels produce.  

In an overview, both the solar loans and solar leases offered by the customer make it affordable to put solar on a homeowner’s roof. The customer’s goal from the start was to create a low overhead lean digital lending operation so anyone who can afford their monthly electricity bill, could also afford to put solar on their roof.

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Challenge

The Customer required user-friendly end-to-end lending processes automation covering application processing, inventory and vendor management, credit scoring and decision-making, loan servicing and collection, reporting as well as all necessary integrations.  

“Offering credit products through our partner-network seemed a lot harder than it turned out to be with TurnKey Lender.” 

Most importantly, they needed a process for in-house staff and equipment providers which would be easy to master without extensive training. Aiming for little to no overhead and extreme platform flexibility, TurnKey Lender quickly became the obvious choice.  

Initially, risk scoring was a source of concern for the Customer because of the need to offer competitive interest rates which required bank-grade credit scoring intelligence. This has been addressed by TurnKey Lender Decision Engine’s AI that processes loan application and credit bureau data as well as other data sources to make accurate decisions instantly. 

Solution

The Customer chose the TurnKey Lender Standard platform due to its unmatched time-to-market, proprietary AI-driven credit scoring built-in, end-to-end functionality and a proven track record in the embedded lending space. 

The edition that met their needs best is tailored to the needs of the equipment finance space with leasing credit products enabled, and a vendor management module included.  

With minimal additional configuration of relevant taxes and inventory management, the project was ready to go live in a matter of a few weeks.  

Other than the standard integrated all-in-one automation of every step of the crediting process, the customer could: 

  • Easily create vendors workplaces for new solar tech providers. 
  • Add new credit products specific to states’ requirements and supplier’s business logic (lease/loan). 
  • Change schedules and fees for existing loans if the borrower needs it, collect payments on auto pilot. 
  • Rely on the pre-configured reporting for internal needs, vendors and stakeholders.  
  • The solution is integrated with a payment provider for disbursement and collection, SMS and email providers for communication with borrowers and vendors, and credit bureau for credit scoring data. 

The custom credit product configured for the customer disburses funds directly to the vendor in several tranches: 

  • Deposit 
  • Installation  
  • Deployment and Maintenance   

Additionally, an industry-specific credit product calculation is the handling of the tax return. Many states offer a tax return on solar panels which is often sent to the lender to expedite full repayment which is considered in the schedule.  

“Solar panel suppliers use our lending platform to originate loans and leases, to track their progress, and get funds deposited to their accounts directly. They don’t need a large bank to delegate credit to and with us it’s much easier for them to offer personalized loan terms and grow faster.” 

Every equipment and services vendor gets a vendor portal where they create applications on behalf of their clients (which they can do from the TurnKey Lender front-end themselves too). The lifecycle of the loan is fully digitized and requires little-to-no human involvement from the sides of the lender, vendor, and borrower. Depending on the agreement with the vendor, the repayment can start after the first tranche or once the solar roof is operational. The repayment usually takes 36 to 72 months. 

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