Keep the Lights On During Public Safety Power Shutoffs

July 26, 2019

Even for those that were lucky to escape the California wildfire season of 2018 with their homes (and their lives), the effects of the wildfires continue into another year. PG&E plans to shut the power grid down when necessary to prevent wildfires from breaking out due to outdated equipment and powerlines. What this means for millions of Californians, is that the electricity you rely on is less dependable. Even with the new wildfire fund bill that was signed, California utility ratepayers will see increasing energy prices to help shoulder the liability costs of what is becoming a new wildfire season reality in the Golden State. 

According to a recent article in Quartz, there is much to be learned from how other states like Florida and territories like Puerto Rico have reacted to natural disasters in the past with a move towards greater home battery backup systems and solar energy installations. 

The PG&E Guide to Outage Resilience

The advice PG&E is currently offering to its customers to prepare for these inevitable outages is: “Build or restock your emergency supply kit...Ensure any backup generators are ready to operate safely… Designate an emergency meeting location...Consider staying with a friend or relative...” There is no mention of battery storage, other than to say (on their website) that battery storage is not likely to save Californians money. 

We think this is a little backward — PG&E is recommending Californians purchase fossil fuel burning backup generators that are only useful in the event of a power outage, whereas a solar plus storage backup battery system can reduce your energy bills and carbon footprint all year round. Even with the high cost of installing a home battery backup system and solar electric system, it is an investment that provides a return in the form of a payback period, as well as peace of mind. Backup generators may help you keep the lights on in an outage, but they can’t store the energy you generate from owning your own solar energy system. 

The Importance of Access to Home Battery Backup Systems

Just like the damage from past wildfires, these planned power outages are not just going to target those who can afford to spend the upfront costs of installing a home battery backup system. Accessibility to the necessary upgrades your home needs is increasingly important, especially for those with medical needs that are threatened by power outages. This is at the heart of what we do here at Renew Financial — help Californians to protect their families and their homes without emptying their entire savings accounts, or that find traditional financing routes closed off to them. 


Democratizing Home Safety Upgrades

Sticker shock is common when looking at the cost of making the necessary safety upgrades like home battery backups. But what if you could get the upgrades you need while spreading the cost over a term, without needing to make a down payment? This is exactly what you can expect from PACE financing. Renew Financial is the pioneer of PACE financing. The goal of PACE financing is to democratize access for all to the home safety upgrades you need, before the next natural disaster. With PACE financing, you can finance your upgrades with:

  • No FICO score requirements
  • $0 down
  • Repayment terms up to 30 years
  • 100% financing (up to $250,000)
  • Low, fixed interest rates

Home safety upgrades through PACE financing are paid back as a line item on your tax bill. 

Get the Answers You Need

If you have questions about how you can keep the lights on in your California home, Renew Financial is here to help. Our goal since 2008 has been to make homes throughout California and Florida safer and more efficient by providing access to intuitive, affordable, flexible financing options. If you have questions about how financing a home battery backup system can benefit your home, get in touch with a Renew Financial expert today!

Apply for Renew PACE financing today!