Social housing: how to cover costs for refurbishment?

The LEMON project (Less Energy More Opportunities) gives an innovative answer to this question by combining new types of financing and lease contracts targettting social housing. Lemon will test new types of EPC (Energy Performance Contract) and EPTA (Energy Performance Tenancy Agreement) contracts, to support the refurbishment of 622 social housing homes in Parma and Reggio Emilia, one of ACCENT pilot cities in Italy.

Started in February, in 28 months, the project will develop new financial tools which will leverage up to 15 million investments on refurbishment for scocial housing.  The redevelopment is aimed at reducing the energy demand and will deliver an expected average reduction of energy consumption by about 40% (5,084 GWh saved) and reduce the CO2 emissions of 1,027 tons.

The project is funded by the European program Horizon 2020 and coordinated by AESS (Agency for Energy and Sustainable Development of Modena). Partners are ACER Reggio Emilia and ACER Parma, two social housing agencies located in the Emilia-Romagna region, and ASTER. ASTER, thanks to the network of contacts developed within Climate KIC, will promote the professional training of public and local government decision makers on issues related to sustainability and energy efficiency. ASTER will also focus on increasing the awareness of tenants on building management.

The LEMON project aims at becoming an European best practice. It will support investments by combining different funding instruments available at national and regional level (ERDF funding, national funding, national incentives  as the “heat accounting”), and redistributing part of the investment on rents through a contract based on the energy performance achieved.

For a limited time, the tenants will bear a slightly increased rent. However, this will be largely offset by the energy savings achieved and therefore savings on energy bills, and mostly by an improved quality of life thanks to the increased energy performance and environmental benefits.

Social Housing Agency of Reggio Emilia

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