On Bill Finance

Providing a simple and effective way to bring capital markets and lenders to both residential and commercial consumers with competitive financing and risk management to every utility customer.

Today, a utility accepts a manually processed paper utility guarantee bond from utility customers that is cumbersome for the customer to secure, expensive for the utility to administer and only covers standard utility services.

Tomorrow, the electronic utility guarantee bond can be easy for the customer to secure, cost effective for the utility to administer and cover financing of solar systems to promote Distributed Energy Resources and for privatization of energy production.

Utility guarantee bonds open up a world of innovative financing opportunities for consumers, help utilities meet renewable goals, and help meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals to fight climate change.

Surety Based Risk Management provides consumers with pre-qualified solar installers, the performance bond provides protection against installer default, and the payment bond enables preferred pricing for components.

The Orange Button provides the XBRL data standards for innovators to develop effective ways to attract capital and reduce risk, for utilities to cost effectively engage with third party lenders, for software vendors to enable data interoperability and for consumers to have real choices.

On Bill Finance is one example of how the Orange Button is making an Impact.

On Bill Repayment


Short Term Construction Financing and De-Risking Project Outline
The collaboration will explore developing a significant capital commitment as a short term construction finance lending pool along with a surety program to de-risk the construction phase for solar and energy efficiency projects administered either through internal funding or external funding, then utilizing the On Bill program for the construction loan take out financing.

Term Financing and De-Risking Project Outline
The collaboration will explore developing a significant revolving capital commitment as take out financing for the construction loans and surety program for payment of utility bills, with administration of the portfolio of loans though the On Bill structure.  The term of the loans will be between five and ten years depending on regulatory guidelines for the On Bill program.

Program Outline
The efficiency for the program will be enabled by the digital process employed and data interoperability, from online contractor application and construction monitoring, to ongoing system performance that can impact cash flow.

  • De-risks the project from contractor default during installation.
  • De-risks the loan by providing surety protection against ratepayer repayment default. 
  • Monitors clients and contractor insurance certificates.
  • Monitors and tracks surety bonds.
  • Provide resources to better manage construction loan disbursements.
  • Provide resources for surety claims management
  • Provide insurance products to rate payers such as contractor’s liability, builder’s risk and panel/system performance and warranty insurance. 

Loan charges

  • Installation Contract
  • Loan disbursement and monitoring charges
  • Surety Bond Premium for installation contractor
  • Builders Risk Insurance premium
  • Surety Bond Premium for ratepayer surety bond guaranteeing payments
  • Ongoing O&M expense and surety monitoring for automatic online system reporting
  • Other?

Documentation required for participation

  • ​Client insurance requirements
  • Contractor requirements.  Licensed and bonded.
  • Standardized installation contract, with insurance and surety requirements
  • Instructions on filing electronic bonds for construction
  • Standardized installation contract performance and payment bond, filed electronically.
  • Surety bond guaranteeing payment to UTILITY COMPANY , filed electronically
  • Instructions on filing electronic bonds for utility ratepayer payment guarantee
  • List of surety markets participating in program (ie claims response commitments)
  • Surety Indemnity agreement, with right of salvage.
  • Requirement and guidance for providing ongoing Solar System Performance Data Set – IECRE 61724
  • List of charges collected at outset or through On Bill

Executive Summary

XBRL-CET is a volunteer based working group to leverage the DOE Green and Orange Buttons, the Blue Button, along with the DATA Act and other mandates, and structures like On-Bill Financing and On-Bill Repayment programs, to help drive consensus for open standards based data interoperability to influence the direction of data standards. 

Those data standards, along with specially tailored surety products and services, can then be employed by the On Bill program structure (“On Bill Surety Structure”) for greater efficiency and improved risk management, which can then attract capital at very competitive terms and act as a model for other solar programs.

The objective of the On Bill Surety Structure is encourage the utility rate payer to invest in solar and clean energy by simplifying procurement and ownership by de-risking both the construction and loan repayment default exposure by utilizing surety to attract low cost capital for solar and clean energy, particularly in neighborhoods where energy costs have a significant economic impact.

To promote engagement, and to create a shareware prototype application to prompt others to develop applications following the Green Button model, we are coordinating the Data Exchange Pilot across industry segments that will be good for all stakeholders, establish standards that are public resources that in turn promote application development and enables innovative data analytics for new products and services.

The Data Exchange Pilot mission statement:
To help fight climate change by making solar more bankable while helping small business, veterans and promoting diversity by establishing the data set for a company profile and data set for solar system performance.

Nationally the end result of the On Bill Surety Program and Contest will be improved access to capital for energy efficiency projects and to increase the bankability of solar.

For California it will help meet the of 50% renewable energy requirement as called for under SB350.

For investors and financiers it will provide safe and reliable returns, with structures in place to administer the loan portfolio, and efficient risk bearing management of defaults.

For diverse, small and veteran owned companies it will improve access to surety and bank credit for securing opportunities that help businesses grow and prosper.

For utilities, project owners and general contractors the supply chain will have a larger pool of diversity with qualified companies that have financial backing to mitigate the risk of non-performance or default.