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A winning formula for the ‘Renovation Wave’

Housing Europe & the International Union of Tenants have asked the European Commission to consider some key factors

Brussels , 14 August 2020 | Published in Energy, Future of the EU & Housing
Find the joint letter here
Find the joint letter here

Тhe recovery package and the Just Transition Fund will have the mission to rebuild the European economy in a green way. The energy renovation of apartments, where households of low and medium-income live, will be a substantial part of this policy move and this is why Housing Europe, together with the International Union of Tenants (IUT), have asked the European Commission to consider some key factors to ensure the success of the Renovation Wave.

The EU building ‘Renovation Wave’ has been set for publication in October and the consensus that it will boost the socio-economic recovery of Europeans is firm. To ensure that this political initiative aimed at leading everyone towards a climate-action oriented renewal of society does not instead lead to a growth in inequalities, Housing Europe and the International Union of Tenants (IUT) have asked the European Commission to ensure that dedicated funding includes much-needed grants which do not lead to clashes with EU state aid or deficit rules for Member States.

While energy renovation of the building stock brings multiple co-benefits including reduced green-house gas emissions, increased indoor comfort and better neighbourhoods, avoidance of health problems caused by cold or over-heated homes and generates jobs, these co-benefits are often not reflected in the balance sheet of the housing provider making the investment. Instead, we see them on a societal level when people have decent and affordable living where they can reach their potential.

Housing Europe and the IUT have called on policymakers to make sure that public financing takes into account social and affordable home providers who show commitment to advancing socially inclusive energy renovation, respecting cost neutrality in projects where tenants are not left out-of-pocket. For years, the sector has been showing the way via the Responsible Housing Awards. Public, cooperative and social housing providers are frontrunners when it comes to cost-effectiveness in energy efficiency in buildings but they are also dealing with growing demand for new housing from people whose needs are not being met by the market. Meeting growing demands on both fronts without the right support is not financially viable. It is that simple.

For a successful ‘Renovation Wave’ the voices of those building, managing and living in our homes need to be heard - together they propose a "Renovation Wave Summit" bringing all important players around the table and making sure that the dots are connected, so that we have homes fit for the future without leaving people behind.