Energy Efficiency Financing

  • OFN and Bank of America teamed to launch a capacity building initiative

  • to help CDFIs improve and expand their energy efficiency financing programs.



Improving the energy efficiency of housing, businesses, and community facilities can transform lives and communities by lowering operating costs, creating “green collar” jobs, and reducing carbon emissions. Financing these projects is an emerging and growing segment of the opportunity finance industry, which is uniquely positioned to bring environmental sustainability and economic opportunity to low-income communities traditionally left behind by more mainstream energy efficiency loan programs.

With the support of Bank of America, in 2012 OFN launched an Energy Efficiency capacity building initiative to help CDFIs improve and expand their energy efficiency financing programs. The initiative includes a webinar series and the creation of a low-cost financing fund to support OFN Members’ energy efficiency lending.

The links below lead to the webinar podcasts and PowerPoint presentations, the financing fund application, and additional resources.

Podcasts & Webinars

Supported by Bank of America, OFN developed the following trainings to help CDFIs improve their energy efficiency financing programs. Listen to the podcast and download the presentations.

Underwriting Multi-family Energy Efficiency Projects
April 16, 2013

Is your CDFI interested in supporting energy efficiency and cost control in affordable multi-family buildings? Learn how OFN Member Enterprise Community Partners is meeting the challenges of underwriting such transactions.

Listen to podcast below:

Download the presentation.

Underwriting Energy Efficiency Loans for Commercial, Community Facilities, and Mixed Use Real Estate 101
January 29, 2013

Clean energy and community development expert Robert G. Sanders discusses what’s needed to adequately underwrite an energy efficiency commercial loan. He introduces different ways to establish baseline and projected energy savings for occupied and unoccupied existing buildings and new construction; identifies special energy-related loan conditions to help ensure that expected energy outcomes are achieved; discusses what the impact of projected energy cost savings will have on the credit analysis (e.g., debt service coverage ratio, real estate appraised value); and suggests an effective application and underwriting process for energy efficiency commercial loans.

Listen to podcast below:

Download the presentation.

Energy Efficiency Measurement and Analysis
December 11, 2012

Often a third of a building’s operating budget, utility expenses can be the biggest—and most unpredictable—line item. In the past, understanding a facility’s energy performance was time-consuming, tedious, and unwieldy. Manual data entry and record keeping frequently resulted in inconsistent and error-prone analysis. Today, a number of software products exist to simplify this process and provide automated utility tracking and building performance benchmarking. In this podcast, two of the leading platforms in the market, WegoWise and EnergyScoreCards, demonstrate their products and show how utility analysis can uncover savings opportunities in your existing properties or in plans for new construction.

Listen to podcast below:

Partnerships for Energy Efficiency Lending
November 13, 2012

Effective energy efficiency lending requires unique skills and knowledge. In this podcast, learn which improvements have the most impact for the least cost and how to structure loans that work for the customer and the CDFI. Hear from Jack Markowski, President & CEO of Community Investment Corporation, and Anne Evens, Director of CNT Energy, who describe their successful Energy Savers partnership, which has reduced energy costs by 30% in more than 9,500 affordable apartments in the Chicago Metro area. This innovative partnership combines the lending expertise of a CDFI and energy efficiency expertise of a nonprofit energy organization to deliver a one-stop shop for multifamily building owners.

Listen to podcast below:

Download the presentation.

Green Finance Fund/United States Green Building Council (USGBC)
April 25, 2012

Wanda Speight, EVP Financial Services for OFN, discusses OFN’s Energy Efficiency Financing Program and announces OFN’s partnership with the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). Beth Holst, VP of Strategic Alliances for USGBC, presents an overview of USGBC and some of the benefits OFN Members will receive through the partnership, including free and discounted services.

Listen to podcast below:

Download the presentation.

Other Resources

Below are links to Web sites, articles, and other resources that may be useful to CDFIs involved in energy efficiency financing. If you have materials you’d like to share, please send them to Jacqueline Fox at

The Clean Energy States Alliance (CESA). CESA is a national nonprofit organization that works with state leaders, federal agencies, industry players, and other stakeholders to promote renewable energy and energy efficiency. CESA’s mission is to support state and local leadership to promote the use of existing and emerging clean energy.

Database of State Incentives for Renewals and Efficiency (DSIRE). DSIRE is a comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. This site includes a clickable map of the 50 states with tax incentives, loan programs, utility programs, etc.

Home Energy Efficiency and Mortgage Risks. A new report by the UNC Center for Community Capital and Institute for Market Transformation shows the risk of mortgage default is one-third lower for energy-efficient, ENERGY STAR-rated homes—a factor lenders and Congress should consider when making mortgage loans and policy.

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