Rocket Companies jumps as mortgage lender announces expansion into solar

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Signage for Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans is displayed on a laptop computer in an arranged photograph taken in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., on Thursday, Aug. 6, 2020.

Gabby Jones | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Shares of Rocket Companies jumped as much as 8% on Monday after the mortgage lender announced an unusual expansion into the solar industry.

The Detroit-based company said the new offering will be tested starting in the fourth quarter, with plans to have the service available to the public in early 2022.

The company, which is the largest mortgage lender in the U.S. through its Rocket Mortgage division, will utilize a tech-driven approach that it says will simply the process of installing a rooftop solar system.

“We have the technology and expertise to provide the best experience possible for homeowners who want to go green,” Jay Farner, vice chairman and CEO of Rocket Companies, said in a statement. “This is a perfect synergy between our businesses as we develop a digital solution to ensure Americans can receive solar panels with the same certainty they have come to expect when working with our Rocket platforms.”

The announcement comes amid a boom in residential solar. The last few years has seen a record number of customers turning to solar, but across the U.S. less than 5% of eligible homes currently have rooftop panels. A recent study from the Solar Energy Industries Association and energy consultancy Wood Mackenzie forecast the solar market quadrupling by 2030.

Rocket Companies said a dedicated team known as Rocket Cloud Force will advise potential clients, connect them to the company’s digital financing application, and then facilitate the solar installation.

During afternoon trading the stock retreated from its session high, and by 3:15 p.m. on Wall Street was up 5%.

“As Rocket Companies’ first step into green energy, Rocket Mortgage…is immediately releasing a new rate-and-term refinance giving homeowners the ability to consolidate any solar panel loan with their mortgage for one low interest rate,” the company said in a statement.

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