Timeline and Milestones

2019

Powering a prosperous and clean energy future for all.

Jumping from $172 million in clean energy financing in 2018, Michigan Saves zoomed past $200 million in 2019 to finance more than $229 million in renewable and energy-efficiency upgrades. That’s a 33 percent year-over-year increase that went to help more families and organizations take control of their energy consumption and, in some cases, production.

The nonprofit green bank also received national recognition as a leader in clean energy as Michigan Congresswoman Debbie Dingell helped lead the effort to create a national climate bank that built upon Michigan’s successful green bank model.

Milestones
PROVIDED MORE THAN $169.8 MILLION IN RESIDENTIAL FINANCING
PROVIDED MORE THAN $59.2 MILLION IN COMMERCIAL FINANCING
LAUNCHED REVOLVING LOAN AND REBATE PILOT PROGRAM WITH DTE FOR CUSTOMERS WITH LOW TO MODERATE INCOMES
PILOTED AND LAUNCHED THE NATIONAL GREEN ENERGY NETWORK—A SYSTEM THAT HELPS CLEAN ENERGY FINANCING ENTITIES REDUCE COSTS AND CREATE EFFICIENCIES IN PROGRAM AUTOMATION AND DESIGN
RECOGNIZED AS NATIONAL LEADER IN CLEAN ENERGY BY CONGRESSWOMAN DEBBIE DINGELL OF MICHIGAN UPON INTRODUCTION OF THE NATIONAL CLIMATE BANK ACT OF 2019
GREW CONTRACTOR NETWORK BY 103 INDIVIDUALS—A TOTAL OF 752 AUTHORIZED CONTRACTORS
INTRODUCED FIRST-EVER COMMERCIAL BEER AND WINGS COMPETITION FOR CONTRACTORS

2018

$172 million and counting.

After hitting the $100 million mark in energy financing in 2017, we continued to see explosive growth in 2018. In fact, we grew the total amount financed by more than 72 percent to close out the year with more than $172 million. But the growth didn’t stop there.

Thanks to our efforts to attract and retain contractors, we grew our contractor network to a total of 649 authorized contractors—a 22 percent increase from 2017. As our contractor network grew, so did the number of top performers in our residential Beer and Wings competition, with 2018 marking the largest-ever winner’s circle of contractors who financed 60 or more loans during the calendar year. We also expanded our list of eligible measures to offer even more residential and commercial energy improvement options; expanded our commercial offerings to support larger projects and provide longer terms; made key operational investments to enhance the contractor section of our website; and developed a platform that will automate workflows and facilitate communication between the loan center, lenders, contractors, and Michigan Saves staff.

Milestones
MORE THAN $36.9 MILLION IN RESIDENTIAL LOANS
MORE THAN $14 MILLION IN COMMERCIAL LOANS
FOURTH ANNUAL GOVERNOR’S ENERGY EXCELLENCE AWARDS
GAINED TWO FULL-TIME TEAM MEMBERS

2017

$100 million and a bright future.

A banner year, 2017 saw Michigan Saves soar past the $100 million mark in energy-efficiency and renewable energy improvements. Recognizing this extraordinary growth, Michigan Saves stakeholders agreed on a sweeping new five-year strategy that would put the organization at $1 billion in green energy financing by 2023.

Milestones
$21.4 MILLION IN RESIDENTIAL LOANS
$10.8 MILLION IN COMMERCIAL LOANS
THIRD ANNUAL GOVERNOR'S ENERGY EXCELLENCE AWARDS
WON INSPIRING EFFICIENCY IMPACT AWARD BY THE MIDWEST ENERGY EFFICIENCY ALLIANCE

2016

Stronger solar energy improvements.

In 2016, Michigan Saves redoubled its efforts in the solar market. Although the organization financed its first solar project back in 2011, it wasn’t until 2016 that Michigan Saves brought on additional lenders with more favorable terms specifically for this market. As a result, in early 2017, Michigan Saves had financed a cumulative one megawatt in solar photovoltaic (PV), enough to power over 200 homes per year. Just 11 months after that, the organization had doubled its growth in the solar PV market.

New programs for greater access.

Partnering with the City of Holland, Michigan Saves developed a creative financing program. This on-bill program allowed consumers to pay for energy-efficiency and renewable energy improvements through utility bill payments, thereby offering longer terms (up to 15 years), simplifying payments, and expanding credit to anyone who had consistent utility bill payment history.

Milestones
$15.3 MILLION IN RESIDENTIAL LOANS
$8.6 MILLION IN COMMERCIAL FINANCING
SECOND ANNUAL GOVERNOR'S ENERGY EXCELLENCE AWARDS

2015

The Governor’s Energy Excellence Awards.

Seeking to celebrate outstanding achievements in energy excellence, Michigan Saves partnered with the Office of the Governor to organize the first ever Governor’s Energy Excellence Awards. This event, now in its fourth year, recognizes pioneers in the field of energy-efficiency around the state.

Michigan Saves finances more than $50 million in energy improvements.

By mid-2015, Michigan Saves’ total loan portfolio surpassed the $50 million mark.

Milestones
$13.4 MILLION IN RESIDENTIAL LOANS
$6.9 MILLION IN COMMERCIAL LOANS

2014

Incentive programs.

In 2014, Michigan Saves took steps to aggressively lower interest rates for residential improvements. The organization successfully secured its lowest standard rate ever at 4.25% APR. This helped spur Michigan Saves’ best year to date in terms of loan activity. Also in this period, through partnerships with utilities, Michigan Saves introduced interest rate buydowns, whereby some commercial and residential customers could get rates as low as 0% APR.

Business Energy Financing program growth.

In 2014, Michigan Saves’ commercial financing program really began to take off, serving nearly twice as many customers than in the previous two years combined—a whopping 191 percent growth.

Milestones
$9.8 MILLION IN RESIDENTIAL LOANS
$4.6 MILLION IN COMMERCIAL FINANCING

2013

New executive director.

Although she had been helping lead Michigan Saves in her role as program manager for BetterBuildings for Michigan for quite some time, in 2013 Mary Templeton was formally brought on as executive director, bringing her deep knowledge and experience in residential and commercial energy-efficiency strategies. The organization went from having financed just under $20 million in energy-efficiency improvements prior to her appointment to over $100 million in less than five years under her leadership.

Multifamily unit expansion.

A traditionally underserved market, multifamily dwellings still make up a large share of Michigan homes, particularly among the low- and mid-income residents of the state. To reach this market, Michigan Saves launched a program to serve this market and overcome barriers that historically made it difficult to secure financing for this sector.

Milestones
$8.7 MILLION IN RESIDENTIAL LOANS
$1.6 MILLION IN COMMERCIAL LOANS

2012

Our first commercial program.

Initially a pilot program, Michigan Saves’ Business Energy Financing program formally got up and running in 2012 to meet a market demand for efficiency and renewable energy improvements to commercial buildings. This program surpassed its targets to grow to nearly $35 million in cumulative financing by the end of 2017.

Milestones
$12.9 MILLION IN RESIDENTIAL LOANS
$245,000 IN COMMERCIAL FINANCING

2011

BetterBuildings for Michigan.

Through a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy and Michigan Agency for Energy, the BetterBuildings for Michigan program was established to create a sustainable energy-efficiency market through outreach, education, and investment tools for lenders. Michigan Saves managed the grant on behalf of the state by working with several partners throughout the state to implement the program. By the time the program wound down in 2013, BetterBuildings for Michigan had completed energy-efficiency improvements on 7,689 homes throughout the state. Including directly leveraged homeowner participation in other programs, like the Weatherization Assistance Program and the Wyandotte Municipal Services WIRES program, BetterBuildings served 11,571 homeowners in total.

Milestones
FIRST LOAN FOR A SOLAR PV SYSTEM IN JUNE 2011
$5.0 MILLION IN RESIDENTIAL LOANS
The Scholten Family

2010

Our first loan.

In October 2010, the first project was financed through Michigan Saves’ Home Energy Loan Program (HELP) for just over $3,000. HELP financing offers favorable terms and helps families reduce energy costs through improvements to their homes. As of the end of 2017, HELP has financed more than 9,000 projects in Michigan residences, totaling more than $87 million, $317,000 of which was in residential loans.

Milestones
$317,000 IN RESIDENTIAL LOANS

2009

The birth of Michigan Saves.

Through a grant from the Michigan Public Service Commission, Michigan Saves began with the mission to stimulate and support investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements in Michigan homes. This initial grant totaled $8 million, with $1 million earmarked to set up the organization and the remainder to establish a credit enhancement in the form of a loan loss reserve, which allows lenders to offer better rates and longer terms.

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