Finding energy financing for solar and wind projects can be challenging because most investors want to see successful past projects of the same size before risking their money on your venture. This can be an insurmountable hurdle for newer businesses that prices them out of the market.
Whether you are trying to finance solar panels for the roof of your building or trying to get into the energy market with a 100-megawatt wind farm, it is vital to start small. Most investors will look at your request and your history to determine whether the risk is worth the reward. If your first energy project costs several million dollars, underwriters will have difficulty seeing a pattern of success justifying such an investment. It is better to start with several one-to-five-megawatt projects and build industry relationships and experience before tackling something more significant.
Solar and wind projects, like the energy financing required to accomplish them, rely on building the right relationships with business partners in related sectors. For instance, if you have successfully installed solar panels on the roof of one of your buildings and built a good business relationship with the panel manufacturer and installer, then when you want to convert another property to a solar farm, those businesses will know that you are reliable and are more likely to invest as partners.
The renewables industry does not currently have standardized paperwork for investments and financing for solar and wind projects of any scale. The increasing standardization of contracts in large-scale projects does not always reflect the concerns unique to small and medium-scale projects. One way to combat this is to standardize your company’s paperwork and established guidelines. This standardization makes it easier for you and your business partners to understand each party’s responsibilities, investments, and returns. It can also help keep the information straight in your head for each project you work on. If every project has your company responsible for ten percent of the labor, then you know that whomever you talk to about a project will expect that ten percent.
The need for energy financing is quickly outpacing the availability of industry standardization. This can lead to confusing processes that work well for established companies working on large projects but not for the tasks your small business wants to tackle. To get the best financing, you will first want to know what scale of project your company can handle and then find business partners to help you succeed with increasingly more extensive projects.