NSW Govt to offer 8,000 interest free loans for Solar

The New South Wales government has called for industry feedback on its zero-interest loan program, that will offer up to $9,000 in finance for a home battery system, and up to $14,000 for solar plus storage.

Details of the Empowering Homes program were published in a ‘market sounding’ paper released this week by the NSW Department of Planning and Environment, offering a first look at the design of the loans scheme, announced in February.

It reveals that access to the loans will be limited to home owner-occupiers with a combined household income of up to $180,000, and applications will be restricted to 8,000  in the first year.

The NSW government is also planning to take a hands-off approach to running the program, and so is seeking expressions of interest from potential administrators, as well as for a financial service provider for the loans.

Ultimately, the program aims to support the installation of up to 300,000 solar and battery systems over the course of a decade, with the loans repaid through savings on household energy costs.The government has stopped short, however, of guaranteeing that the cost benefits of the solar and battery systems will balance out the loan repayments.

“While households should be able to make energy bill savings from their system, it should be clear that the NSW Government does not guarantee that these savings will be equivalent to or exceed the loan repayments,” the document says.

“Delivery partners and approved system suppliers must be mindful of sales claims about any net savings in energy costs in their marketing materials.”


  1. Pity the scheme doesn’t offer loans for panels and associated hardware without the batteries. With current battery prices, losses into and out of the battery, electricity prices and times that household use is highest, the most effective way to reduce electricity bills for households is to invest in panels. Using batteries at current times actually costs money (except in SA where it might be possible to break even). Pity.

    1. Agreed Brian – in most cases batteries do not pay for themselves during their expected life. We have still have plenty of way to go with Residential Solar PV.

      Solar Choice Staff

  2. Let’s hope that there are lessons learnt from the Victorian Debacle. As an industry, we weren’t wanting any further assistance for Solar PV as such. The STC Rebate is already providing an appropriate amount of assistance already, and there are very good Finance Packages in the market. Batteries on the other hand could do with some assistance.
    I’m concerned that when we look at the Victorian experience where the Solar Industry was given assistance, that it didn’t ask for, and is now causing the “destruction” of the Industry itself.
    If that’s the type of Help we are getting, no thanks.

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