Power of Earth Geothermal Heating – Ep 7 – Creating Home Sustainability Solutions with Innovative Financing with Eric Howarth, GoodLeap

Episode 73

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Hosted by
Ron Kamen

Ron Kamen has decades of expertise & leadership in catalyzing exponential change in sustainable energy adoption with communities, governments, non-profits, and businesses.

Quantum Quote: “If everybody is thinking the same, then somebody isn’t thinking.” – General George Patton

In this time of the pandemic, everything we do is done at home. Everyone’s inside and we’re at home for the whole day, therefore our energy consumption gets higher as well.

Many people are doing home improvements, but not everyone can afford the upfront investments necessary to improve energy efficiency and reduce their energy costs. 

Did you know that GoodLeap finances half of the residential solar installations in the United States? Now, you can now be financed to purchase geothermal heat pumps and other energy efficiency products in 15-20 year contracts. You can even apply tax credit or grants toward the loan and lower the payment after 18 months, making your project cash positive!  

With geothermal, you can see at a 2/3 reduction in your annual heating and cooling costs compared to oil or propane..

Moreover, if you’re a contractor, you can also learn how to sell financing and improve your sales. The renewable energy technologies are getting more affordable and cost effective. This is most evident with solar, where the installed prices have decreased from $10 per watt a decade ago – to under $3.50 per watt today!

Check out this week’s AWESome EarthKind Energy podcast where we interview Eric Howarth, the Vice President of Home Innovation Solutions in GoodLeap.

Eric Howarth has 20 years of experience in the home improvement financing space. In this time, Eric has run large scale manufacturer and distribution financing programs, and has taught thousands of contractors to use financing to upsell into high efficiency and renewable energy.

Eric has been working with GoodLeap for two and a half years. Currently, GoodLeap is already the largest solar-lender in the space, with about 50% market share of all US residential solar system sales. 

Sign up for a free webclass to discover how easy it is to get ultra-efficient geothermal heating and cooling installed in your home – without the pain of emptying your savings account.

In “The Power Of Earth with Comfort” From ClimateMaster a free webclass, you’ll discover the answers every homeowner needs to know, including:

  • How geothermal heating and cooling can draw energy from the ground beneath our feet (for pennies)
  • Why homeowners everywhere are making the switch.
  • The secrets to securing utility incentives and tax credits to pay for a large portion of your new geothermal system

and much more …

SuperNova #1. The number one thing I’ve seen over the years that changes contractor stars is to consistently offer low monthly payment options. Nobody likes to write a big check. Nobody likes to empty their bank account of cash. If you can get them a low monthly payment, you have a much better chance of closing the job.

SuperNova #2. It really starts not just with the homeowner education but teaching the contractor to be comfortable selling financing in the home to open up those opportunities for energy efficiency.

SuperNova #3. Don’t put your own preconceived notions on the customer. Offer them everything and let them choose their preferred payment option. 

Worst Career Moment: “I was giving a speech at the million solar roofs initiative in 2008, and just before I went on, I got a call from my rep that literally said all of my programs have been shut down… It was a life lesson for me not to put all my eggs in one basket.” – Eric Howarth

Aha! Moment: “My 100th time at home with the contractor. I was with a contractor that was small and their main goal was to be just entrepreneurs and do whatever. In the home with them, sitting in front of the customer, he started trying to close the transaction without offering financing. Here I am the financing guy, and he just went right to the price of the unit. Instead, I calculated the payment and I just said, ‘hey I am the financing person and that payment would only be x for month’. The light went on for them and they grew. Now, they’re a $70 million company.” – Eric Howarth

 Best Advice He’s Ever Received: “Always be patient. You don’t have to make instant decisions all the time.” – Eric Howarth

Personal Habit that Contributes to Success: “Listening to my clients on what they need so I can help them grow their business.” – Eric Howarth

Internet Resource: NEXT IQ

Book Recommendation: The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan

Magic Wand: “I would wish that everybody could be at peace.” – Eric Howarth

WTF or F: “I was with a finance group that was trying to recruit me. We were sitting down for dinner and lightning knocked the power out. The restaurant we were in was a steakhouse where you cook your own steak. They had barbecue pits in there, and so they needed the power to pull out the smoke. Without power, the place started filling with smoke. We all had to go outside of the restaurant, and they had this little tiny cover in the front. There wasn’t enough room for everybody.We were all dressed up for a business thing, and were a hundred percent soaked in about two seconds.” – Eric Howarth  

Most Energized About Today: “I love where I work. I love the people I work with. I’m energized about the company that I work for. It’s an amazing group of people.” – Eric Howarth

Next Step: “I’m rolling out home improvement to the US, so I’m totally excited about it. We’ve come out with a really strong program, a great technology that could literally process a loan in less than two minutes.” – Eric Howarth

Parting Advice: “Offer a monthly payment as your first option every single time; and then for your cash buyers, still offer them a no-interest, no-pay option.” – Eric Howarth

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