Solar repayment plans

 

One of the more popular solar repayment plans is offered by Community First Credit Union.

 

Pretty simple to apply for them and as long as you are over 18, an Australian resident and have a steady income (* see note at page end about Covid 19). Read this one page PDF for the process.

 

Feedback from some of our customers who chose this loan design is postive because apart from the $195 setup fee (that is added to the loan) there are no monthly 'admin' fees, and if you take out a long term loan (e.g. 5 years) but later come into some money and want to pay the loan out, then they don't charge any exit fees. They just calculate what is owing and give you the payout figure.

We downloaded some data from their website to give you an idea in the table below...

 

In this example, the value of the solar is $5,290.

 

Add to that the application/setup fee of $195 and the loan amount becomes $5,485.

The repayments are shown below as monthly by taking the total amount repaid and dividing it by the number of months.

 

Term of loan
Loan amount
Repayment
Monthly payments
Interest
         
1 year
$5,485
$5,664
$472
$179
2 years
$5,485
$5,832
$243
$347
3 years
$5,485
$6,003
$167
$518
4 years
$5,485
$6,230
$130
$745
5 years
$5,485
$6,351
$106
$866

 

There are of course, others who can loan you the money to buy your solar.
Parker Lane for instance who have a lower interest rate of 4.99% but a higher setup fee of $399 than Community First. For a shorter term loan, of one or two years, Community First work out cheaper as far as we can tell, at three years they work out almost exactly the same, and longer than that, it seems like Parker Lane's lower interest rate overcomes their higher setup fee and are the better deal. Anyway, we aren't finance brokers, so we will leave it to you to hunt down whatever deal works best.

 

Interest-free deals
The saying goes that 'there's no such thing as a free lunch' and these interest-free deals are a classic example of that. Retailers who sign up with finance companies (usually Certegy) are charged a fee, something like $750 for each solar deal. No great intelligence required to work out who will end up paying that fee.

 

COVID 19 - JobSeeker and JobKeeper payments

We rang Community First on 31/3/2020 and asked whether payments from the JobSeeker and JobKeeper programs would be considered as regular income. They said that JobSeeker payments would not, and they are waiting to see the detail of the JobKeeper program before making a decision. If we get any updated information we will post it here.

 

 
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