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  •  Another way to expand those incentives would (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Meteor Blades, Radical def

    be to require banks to retrofit any foreclosed house with a starter solar panel kit, tied into the local power grid.

    These kits go for about $1000.00 when purchased one at a time, produce an average of 32kWh per month, and are expandable by future homeowners. Homeowners would get tax credits for installing more panels.

    While that's not a lot of power, it becomes helpful when you take into account that there are over 1.5 million foreclosed homes (and counting).

    This would pump money into the economy with the purchases, produce local jobs for installation, reduce energy purchases by the power companies, change the mindset of americans, and help with global warmng - and it's a cheap investment in America.

    The program could slowly be extended to all houses, starting with the most expensive. There is precedent for this in that there are counties in Florida requiring that rated hurricane shutters are installed before the house can be sold.

    "I still say a church steeple with a lightning rod on top shows a lack of confidence."

    by logsol on Sat Nov 21, 2009 at 09:10:45 AM PST

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    •  I guess I'll have to be the one to speak up for (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Odysseus, DrFitz

      the poor banks: they're already taking huge hits on the houses they foreclose on, and now you want them to spend even more money on them?  As a political matter it would never happen; as a practical matter, if it did pass the effect would be to make mortgages impossible to get for anyone that isn't very, very wealthy.

      ie, if your goal is to make the difference between the rich and everyone else even starker, your proposal is a good start.

      Revolutionary Road was an awful, awful film.

      by burrow owl on Sat Nov 21, 2009 at 09:54:11 AM PST

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      •  Those houses will sell eventually. To increase (0+ / 0-)

        the purchase price by $1000 on a house that will already probably sell below value is not that big a deal - and eventually the banks will get their money back and lots of interest on the next mortgage.

        "I still say a church steeple with a lightning rod on top shows a lack of confidence."

        by logsol on Sat Nov 21, 2009 at 10:05:08 AM PST

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        •  That's not how it'll play out. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Odysseus

          For a bank, a foreclosed house is a disaster.  They're not gonna have the same lending policy and then raise prices on the back end; when foreclosure gets more expensive, they restrict lending to reduce cost.

          I come from a family of community bankers, and I can attest that selling foreclosed houses is, in fact, a big deal.  

          Revolutionary Road was an awful, awful film.

          by burrow owl on Sat Nov 21, 2009 at 10:36:20 AM PST

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          •  Here in south florida if a house doesn't (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            burrow owl

            have certified hurricane shutters, the bank must install them before the house can be sold. The cost (I'm assuming) is tacked onto the sale price.

            I'm just saying I think it can be done.

            "I still say a church steeple with a lightning rod on top shows a lack of confidence."

            by logsol on Sat Nov 21, 2009 at 10:49:35 AM PST

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            •  There's no question it "can be done" (0+ / 0-)

              The question is whether it's good policy, and there's no way in hell it is.

              The Berkeley Model is what you need.  Putting the onus to do this on banks is both silly and stupid.

              -7.75 -4.67

              "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose."

              There are no Christians in foxholes.

              by Odysseus on Sat Nov 21, 2009 at 11:58:12 AM PST

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