Guidelines for mortgage providers on the promotion of energy efficiency

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The purpose of these new guidelines is to encourage mortgage providers to consider long-term value retention, and consequently the energy efficiency of the building, when offering clients advice on financing a property. The intention is to make clients aware of the importance of energy efficiency upgrades. The initial focus is on advice to private individuals seeking finance for single-family and holiday homes. These guidelines are binding on all SBA members and non-members can adopt them on a voluntary basis. These guidelines come into force on 1 January 2023.
These Guidelines cover both personal and, analogously, digital advice for private individuals seeking finance for owner-occupied single-family homes and holiday homes. These Guidelines cannot form the basis of any claims by mortgage clients.
Mortgage providers can structure their conditions in the areas of loan-to-value, affordability, amortisation and interest rates within the framework of the applicable self-regulatory regime in a way that distinguishes between the financing of sustainable properties and those with non-sustainable characteristics. In addition, they can develop new products and services that promote the goal of improved energy efficiency.
When providing advice on property financing, the following specific elements should be addressed in particular: Discussing and assessing the foreseeable need for renovation with the aim of motivating owners to deal with the issue of maintaining the value and energy efficiency of the property and thus also the long-term preservation of the invested capital, with a view to implementing suitable measures; If required, transparent presentation of financing options depending on the measures to preserve the value of the property in the long term and increase energy efficiency, including: a. Information on available public and private funding for building renovation, raising client awareness of, and where necessary offering financial support for, the issue of energy certificates; b. Information on independent experts and specialist bodies for the purpose of obtaining specific advice on the energy impact and financial effects of any optimisation measures (e.g. making buildings more self-sufficient through additional measures to reduce energy consumption or generate electricity and how these affect ancillary costs); c. Where appropriate, support with applying for funding measures. Even for existing financing without an upcoming adjustment, mortgage providers should make an offer available (through a combination of direct contact and/or website, for example), which points out to clients possible ways of increasing energy efficiency and shows ways of achieving this, including suitable finance.
Mortgage providers shall provide appropriate and regular training for their client advisors and/or mortgage specialists regarding the procedure for the long-term value retention and improvement of the energy efficiency of buildings and for the financing of suitable measures.
These Guidelines come into force on 1 January 2023. A transition period up to 1 January 2024 applies for adapting banks’ internal processes.

No definitions available.