Improving energy efficiency in social housing

A unique service that helps providers of social housing to reduce costs and improve energy efficiency is able to continue and expand thanks to a loan from Co-operative & Community Finance.

Greater London Energy Efficiency Network (GLEEN) has worked with a range of social landlords to develop a web-based management system to issue Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs). This system has greatly reduced the survey and administrative costs of providing EPCs and it is also providing a growing body of accurate data for strategic planning.
“For example, we can provide local authorities and other social landlords with accurate estimates of the amount of loft insulation or the number of replacement boilers that will be required in their housing stock over the next five years,” said Managing Director Tony Rose.

Since GLEEN launched the EPC manager service in October 2008 it has issued over 20,000 certificates. It has contracts with 20 social landlords in London and the south east with a total housing stock of some 250,000 properties. Now GLEEN is looking to expand the service and is tendering for contracts in other regions and in Scotland and Wales.

The financial peaks and troughs of delivering large contracts and the difficulties of managing expansion were putting pressure on GLEEN’s cash flow. We have provided a loan to increase working capital.

GLEEN is a not-for-profit agency that works in partnership with local authorities and social landlords to promote home energy efficiency and affordable warmth. Since it was set up in 1999 GLEEN has developed a number of projects and services to assist providers of social housing and benefit their tenants.

“We focus almost exclusively on social housing,” said Tony Rose. “Our aim is to provide good quality services for social housing that will help to increase energy efficiency and reduce fuel poverty.

“We are very well connected in London but we are confident that we could run this service just as well anywhere in the country.”

Tony Rose said: “Ian Taylor says that we are ‘high on morals and low on profit’. I really appreciate the financial help and sound advice he’s given us. It helps to keep us strong.”