Updated 1 week ago

EnFin solar loans: What consumers need to know

Written by Ben Zientara , Edited by Catherine Lane

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EnFin is a relatively new company in the United States solar industry, offering loans for solar panels, batteries, and roofing. The company’s lending is backed by Hanwha, the huge South Korean conglomerate that also owns Qcells, the most popular brand of solar panels for homes in America.

That relationship allows EnFin to offer some pretty good financing deals through Qcells partners, but the company’s loans are available to all U.S. solar installers regardless of the brands they use.

Will EnFin’s unique advantages lead it to dominate the solar financing marketplace? Should consumers choose an EnFin solar loan over other options? Read on to find out.

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Key takeaways

  • EnFin offers solar loans of between 10 and 25 years to homeowners in the U.S. with a minimum credit score of 600.

  • The company doesn’t publish its interest rates and dealer fees but its relationship with Qcells means it can offer better terms to installers that use the brand.

  • The company also extends the performance warranty to 30 years for installations that use Qcells solar panels.

  • EnFin’s loan practices are in line with the rest of the lending industry, and its unique advantages may give consumers a better financial outcome than other solar panel financing options.

Facts about EnFin

As mentioned above, EnFin is owned by the Hanwha Corporation, which also owns the solar panel and equipment manufacturer Qcells. EnFin offers preferable lending products and other advantages to installers using Qcells products.

EnFin is headquartered in Irvine, California, and led by CEO Alex Kaplan, formerly of Mosaic and SolarCity and the founder of SunFi, and COO Christina Kahng, who worked at Hyundai Capital before coming to Qcells and EnFin.

The company offers its solar loans to homeowners through a network of solar installer dealers. If you’ve been offered an EnFin loan, we’re here to walk you through what to expect as you complete the process.

Application process and loan specifics

EnFin works with solar installers nationwide, competing with other top financing companies like Mosaic, Dividend Financial, Sunlight Financial and Home Loan Investment Bank (HLIB).

The EnFin loan application process is straightforward, with a single-page application and soft credit pull for approval. The credit pull remains soft until just before the final installation, so homeowners can rest assured that they’ll only be responsible for the credit responsibility once the panels are on their roof.

Loan details

The company offers loan terms of between 10 and 25 years, with varying interest rates and dealer fees. Like other top solar lending companies, EnFin does not make these rates available to the public, so check with your installer for details.

Different installers will have different loan products available, and EnFin’s top installer partners that install Qcells solar panels will have access to the best rates. In addition to preferable loan rates for top installers, EnFin extends the manufacturer performance warranty from 25 to 30 years for installations that use Qcells solar panels.

Here are some other important facts about EnFin loans:

  • Minimum credit score: 600

  • At least 30% of the loan (the value of the federal solar tax credit) must be paid off within 18 months, or the loan will be re-amortized and your payments will increase.

  • No prepayment penalty

Tip! Get two quotes from your installer — one for a cash purchase and one for a financed purchase. Having both quotes allows you to compare the prices and determine the dealer fee.

How EnFin loans compare to other top financing providers

EnFin is right in the mix with other big solar loan companies. The details listed above are all common in the solar lending industry. And EnFin’s association with Qcells may offer it a slight advantage in the marketplace.

As we said above, none of these big solar financing companies offer information about their rates and dealer fees to the public. Keeping the details of their loan products secret gives these FinTech companies a competitive advantage. Also, these fees change with the marketplace and the Federal Reserve target funds rate, so keeping them up to date would be a nightmare.

We do, however, have some data and some speculation to offer regarding how EnFin’s loans might fit into the broader marketplace. According to our 2022 Solar Industry Survey, the average loan from these companies included a 4.99% APR, a 20% dealer fee, and a 25-year term.

Since the release of our survey, the Fed has raised interest rates significantly, and lending companies have been forced to increase their rates in turn. We’ve seen average APRs closer to 5.99% and dealer fees as high as 40 to 50%.

We have heard from at least one source that EnFin was offering loans at 3.99% with a 22% dealer fee in mid-2023. If those numbers are accurate, getting solar installed by a Qcells dealer and using an EnFin loan could be substantially more advantageous for homeowners. But keep in mind that we haven’t been able to confirm similar EnFin offers elsewhere and don’t have any hard numbers to go on.

Our survey also revealed that around 70% of residential and small commercial solar installation companies in the U.S. installed Qcells solar panels in 2022. With backing from Qcells’ parent company, EnFin has an advantage and can offer better interest rates through Qcells partner installers.

Bottom line: Is an EnFin solar loan right for you?

If you’ve gotten a solar quote from an installer that uses EnFin for financing, you can rest assured that you’ll get a competitive loan offer from a quality lender. Depending on whether the installer is a preferred Qcells partner, you might even get offered one of the most competitive solar loans on the market.

That said, you should do your homework. Get at least three quotes from solar companies, and ask each one for both cash and financed prices. That way, you can get more details about the dealer fees behind the solar loans you’re offered and compare the solar quotes based on all the other important factors.

Finally, speak with a trusted financial advisor about your decision to go solar. At SolarReviews, we can help you do the homework, but we’re not in the business of giving investment advice. Talk to a professional before making a final decision.

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Written by Ben Zientara Solar Policy Analyst

Ben Zientara is a writer, researcher, and solar policy analyst who has written about the residential solar industry, the electric grid, and state utility policy since 2013. His early work included leading the team that produced the annual State Solar Power Rankings Report for the Solar Power Rocks website from 2015 to 2020. The rankings were utilized and referenced by a diverse mix of policymakers, advocacy groups, and media including The Center...

Learn more about Ben Zientara