The Nebraska Energy Quarterly features questions asked about 6% Dollar and Energy Saving Loans. Loan forms may be obtained from participating lenders or the Energy Office.

Questions and Answers...

5% Dollar and Energy Saving Loans

Have there been recent changes to the maximum amount that can be borrowed?

Yes.  Effective June 7, 1999, you may borrow up to $25,000 for eligible energy saving improvements in a single-family dwelling and up to $75,000 for a multi-family building, which is two or more units.  Before, the maximum loan amounts were $20,000 and $60,000, respectively.  Other loan maximums remain the same:  $100,000 for small businesses, non-profits and Rebuild Nebraska partners; $150,000 for Climate Wise Partners; $75,000 for farm and ranch operations; $175,000 for political subdivisions, except schools and state government; $100,000 for rural nursing homes located outside first class or larger cities; and $150,000 for telecommunications projects and alternate fuel projects.

Are the maximum loan amounts applicable to the borrower or the building or operation?

In the case of a single-family home or a multi-family building, the maximum loan amount applies to the building, not the borrower.  Thus, if a borrower owns five single family dwellings, up to $25,000 could be borrowed on each dwelling, provided the borrower qualifies for a loan with a participating lender.  The same would apply to multi-family buildings.  The borrower could get a loan of up to $75,000 for energy saving improvements on each building.

For businesses, non-profits, Rebuild Nebraska and Climate Wise partners, farms and ranches, and political subdivisions, the maximum loan amount applies to the business or operation, not a building.
For telecommunications and alternate fuel projects, the maximum loan amount applies to the borrower, who may borrow up to $150,00 for telecommunications projects as well as $150,000 for alternate fuel projects.

If a borrower has not reached the maximum loan amount on a home, building, business or operation, can additional loans be taken out for eligible work?

A borrower may secure additional funds up to the maximum loan amount for new eligible projects.  If a borrower already has a loan for energy saving improvements totaling $20,000 on a single family dwelling, the same borrower, or a different borrower if the house has since sold, could get a loan of up to $5,000 for additional work on the same house.  This interpretation applies to all loan categories, where additional loans for energy saving improvements may be obtained until the loan limit is reached.

If a borrower is making additional energy saving improvements, does the loan have to be a new, separate one or can the loan be combined with the earlier one on the same property?

Whether the loan will be separate or combined with a previous loan, is at the discretion of the lender.  However, if the new project is combined into one loan with an older loan, the maturity date for the combined loans cannot extend beyond the maximum allowable term on the original loan.  For example, if the original loan had a term of ten years and had been in repayment for four years, the new loan will combine the old and the new projects.  The loan could not be written for and amortized for a period longer than six years.

What are Rebuild Nebraska and Climate Wise partners?

Rebuild Nebraska is a voluntary effort to increase the use of energy efficient technologies in commercial and multi-family buildings.  Climate Wise is a voluntary energy efficiency and waste minimization partnership for manufacturers.  Partners are eligible for Dollar and Energy Saving Loans as well as additional technical assistance in identifying and financing the improvements.  Contact Jack Osterman for more information on these partnerships.

Can anyone finance waste minimization projects as well as energy efficiency projects with a Dollar and Energy Saving Loan?

Any Nebraska business  commercial, industrial, or agricultural   can finance waste minimization projects with a Dollar and Energy Saving Loan.  Potential projects include pollution prevention assessments; equipment to renew or recapture solvents, chemicals and abrasives; projects modifying processes to require fewer or lower toxicity solvents; projects to convert bulk, reusable or lower-volume packing and shipping materials; projects to control inventory to reduce volume of wasted materials; projects which produce new or additional products from current waste streams; projects which separate toxic constituents from the general waste streams; recovery and reuse of waste oil or wood in approved heaters and boilers; recycling equipment; combustion of waste for energy recovery in approved burners; compaction of waste prior to landfilling; and recovery and reuse of waste oil from vehicle fleets.

Waste minimization loans at 2.5% interest are available from participating local lenders for eligible projects that are completed by December 31, 1999.  Potential projects must be described in the Energy Office's Waste Minimization Project Summary, Form 36, and the Summary submitted to the Energy Office for review and approval.  Projects cannot be started or contracted for prior to the Energy Office signing a Commitment Agreement with the applicant's lender to participate in the loan and purchase its share of the loan.  Project Summary forms are available from the Energy Office or can be downloaded or printed from the agency's web site:

Do you have to submit more than one form for some projects such as doors, windows, roofs and siding?  If so, what application forms must be completed and sent to the lender along with the project estimates?

Application Form 2, Door, Window, Wall and Ceiling Projects, must be completed and submitted by the loan applicant for all the projects listed on that form.  In addition to Form 2, the loan applicant and contractor must complete and submit Form 2/Siding if the wall insulation project includes siding; Form 2/Roofing if the attic or ceiling insulation project includes roof repair or replacement; and Form 2/Window/Door if the project is for the replacement of windows or exterior doors.  All borrower forms can be dowloaded from the agency's web site,, and submitted to the agency for processing.

Return to the Summer 1999 Newsletter