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Community First Credit Union and U.S. Green Chamber Launch Green Loans Program

By: Maria Coppola, APR, CPRC

Posted on 7/17/2019 11:00:00 AM

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., July 16, 2019Community First Credit Union has partnered with the North Florida Chapter of the U.S. Green Chamber to launch the region’s only Green Chamber-endorsed Green Energy Loans program to fund commercial and personal projects that seek to improve the environment through lowering energy use and conservation. In 2018, $32 billion were invested in green loans across the U.S., but none were available in the Jacksonville area.

These types of loans help people and businesses make improvements to homes and businesses that conserve energy and water use. Ultimately, loans like this make it easier to be green and reduce air pollution, save water and pursue renewable energy.  

“The North Florida Green Chamber and Community First Credit Union found there were no funding options in our market to make green/environmental improvements to homes and businesses,” said Christina Kelcourse, executive director of the local Green Chamber. “The Community First team went to work on creating a custom solution to making it easier for businesses and individuals to make sustainability and environmental investments in their property.”

Green Loans can be used for home remodeling, to purchase and install solar panels, for improvement roofing costs, insulation or energy efficient windows, Energy Star appliances, and green/natural landscaping, which focuses only on utilizing aesthetic land without using hazardous chemicals. These home updates reduce carbon footprints and reduce toxins in the air. 

“Community First is proud to be able to create this much-needed program,” said Susan Verbeck, chief loan officer at Community First Credit Union. “We are making $5 million available to our members in this Green Loan Program and will continue to grow the available funds as more homeowners and businesses seek to improve their energy usage and conservation.”

There are three kinds of Green Energy Loans now available:

  • The Green Energy Personal Loan for single-family primary residences. This low-cost, fixed rate financing is available for energy-related home improvements like solar panels, water heaters, attic insulation and windows. Minimum loan of $5,000 and up to $50,000.
  • The Green Energy Equity Loan is a second mortgage for single-family primary residences. The loan utilizes home equity for energy-related improvements and can be funded from $10,000 to $100,000. The loans have fixed rates without additional annual fees or closing costs.
  • The Green Energy Commercial Loan is a first or second mortgage product for commercial buildings. These loans are secured by the property and fund projects in excess of $25,000.

Community First Credit Union of Florida is a state-chartered credit union based in Jacksonville serving anyone who lives or works on the First Coast. Community First is one of the 10 largest credit unions in the state, serving more than 140,000 members and with assets of $1.7 billion. Community First has 19 locations and 300 employees. A not-for-profit, Community First is a full-service financial institution offering banking, loans, mortgages and investments for consumers and businesses throughout the First Coast. For more information visit