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Green dreams? Apply for a state loan

Green dreams? Apply for a state loan

Low interest loans subsidized by the State of Missouri are not only available to farmers and small businesses, but families can also use them to produce green energy in their homes.
The Missouri Linked Deposit Program allows Missouri banks to partner with the state treasurer’s office to provide low-interest loans. About 100 lenders throughout the state participate in the program, including the Bank of Missouri in Columbia.
Businesses with fewer than 100 employees, local governments, housing developments, farmers and projects that provide green energy are eligible for the program. Since January 2009, more than $257 million has been provided for various projects and businesses in the state, according to a release from State Treasurer Clint Zweifel’s office.

The Bank of Missouri and the state partnered to provide an $11,000 loan to Columbia residents David and Maria Thomas so they could install solar panels on their house on Addison Drive. Boone County borrowers have received more than $2 million in loans through the program, and The Bank of Missouri has used it to provide more than $1 million in loans, Zweifel said.
For homeowners to qualify for the low-interest financing, the money must be used to buy or build equipment that generates energy from sources other than fossil fuels.
“Finding ways to help the environment and save my family money are important to me,” David Thomas said in the release. “The Missouri Linked Deposit Program loan provided my family the opportunity to continue our efforts to make our home as sustainable as possible.”
In January, Zweifel announced the start of the Home Ownership Purchase Enhancement Program, a $15 million initiative designed to jumpstart the state’s housing-construction industry.
Under the HOPE program, the Missouri Housing Development Commission will provide incentives of up to $1,750 to encourage Missourians to purchase homes. The incentive will equal the cost of the homebuyer’s first year’s property taxes, up to $1,250.
In addition, Missourians also would be eligible for an enhanced incentive if they purchase an energy-efficient home purchase and remodel an existing home, or purchase an item, such as an Energy Star appliance, to make the home more energy-efficient.
If the homebuyer’s estimated property tax would be $1,250, the energy-efficiency enhancement would be $500. If the homebuyer’s property tax would be less than $1,250, the individual would be eligible for a larger energy-efficiency incentive, up to a total incentive of $1,750.
Application forms are available online by visiting and clicking on the Homebuyer Incentive tab.

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