G15 landlord Hyde has revealed that it will report annually on how it is performing on environmental, social and governance (ESG) targets to attract the “right kind” of investors.
The 50,000-home landlord has launched a new framework set against the sector’s Sustainability Reporting Standard for Social Housing as providers intensify their focus on ESG.
As part of this, Hyde will publish an annual “dashboard” showing how the group has performed on key metrics.
Writing in a new report on Hyde’s ESG approach, chief executive Peter Denton said that the G15 group is “determined to find new partners in the investment world where purpose and interests are aligned”.
Among its targets for 2030, Hyde is aiming for 95 per cent of its existing stock to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) grade of C or higher and for new builds to have an EPC grade of B or higher.
On its social targets, the group is aiming for all its stock to meet the Decent Homes Standard by 2030 and for 90 per cent of tenancies to be on five-year-plus contracts.
Hyde also wants to double the size of its estate to 100,000 by 2030.
Last June, Hyde revealed that it was planning to set up a for-profit registered provider that it would use to bring ESG-hungry pension fund equity capital into the UK social housing sector.
On governance targets, Hyde wants 90 per cent of its residents to register a rating of ‘satisfied’ or better. And it wants to retain its overall viability rating of V2 and governance rating of G1.
Mr Denton said he regards ESG as way to “demonstrate what we stand for, and attract the right kind of investment”.
He also said he wants Hyde to work with other landlords. “There is little sense in housing associations trying to go it alone, which is why we are committed to collaborating with other housing providers on the green agenda, in turn helping residents tackle fuel poverty, sustain tenancies and live in healthier homes.”
Hyde joins a string of other associations that have stepped up their focus on ESG as funders increasingly link lending to credentials in this area.
Clarion, Catalyst and Link Group have all completed Ritterwald’s Certified Sustainable Housing Label – a pan-European scheme aimed at measuring housing providers’ performance against ESG criteria.
Meanwhile, Aster used its new financing framework, aligned with the sector reporting standard, to launch its first sustainability bond in January – only the third such issuance in UK social housing. Other housing associations including Bromford have also indicated that they are launching an ESG framework.
Lee Gibson, chief finance officer at Bromford, told the National Housing Federation’s Housing Finance virtual conference last week that the cost of establishing the framework would more than pay for itself. Speaking at the event on 18 March, he suggested that if the assumed saving on a £100m bond is five basis points, the “max £50,000” cost could be recouped within the first year.
Earlier this month Lloyds said that at least a third of the £1.5bn of funding it aims to deliver to the social housing sector this year will be ESG spending.