SMARTER Finance for Families (SMARTER)

The SMARTER Finance for Families (SMARTER) will create “on the ground” operational and self-sustaining Green Homes and Green Mortgage (GHGM) programmes in 11 European countries. While “energy efficient mortgages” exist, SMARTER brings an innovative approach with a heavy focus on addressing all key stakeholder motivations and concerns with a focus on the end consumer or families that must ultimately choose to use the green finance product created. The full GHGM programme has already been tested successfully in one market but the SMARTER project will bring valuable research support to remove real and perceived barriers to the systemic challenge inhibiting GHGM programme’s development to date.

While the prime objective of SMARTER is to introduce “Innovative financing for energy efficiency investments”, the most important enabler of this is to create citizen-driven demand for green finance. By demonstrating the benefits of shifting spending attitudes toward a “total cost of monthly ownership” view of the cost of their home purchase or new construction or renovation project and, in doing so, unlocking a critical increase in construction budgets (often ranging from 15 to 25%) without increasing monthly costs to families. This allows not only buying “less bad” homes but rather buying homes that reach the highest levels of energy, comfort, health and performance while reducing the financial through lower total monthly costs – applying to all housing types from low-income housing to luxury housing and single-family homes to multi-unit residential projects. Citizen-driven demand will help convince Residential Investors/Developers to build to a high EE/Green standard who will be rewarded with positive market differentiation, availability of discounted finance to facilitate purchasing their homes, and ultimately greater sales and Return On Investment success.