October 14, 2015

Making Apartments Greener Can Save Renters Some Green

Making Apartments Greener Can Save Renters Some Green

Energy-efficient apartment buildings generate important savings. Not only in resources and for the environment, but also in operating costs, which can lead to lower rents and utility costs for residents. That's the idea behind Freddie Mac Multifamily's new Green Rebate offering.

The Green Rebate encourages owners and managers to use the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) free ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager® tool to benchmark and track a property's energy and water usage as well as greenhouse gas emissions and to compare its performance against similar properties nationwide. The results help identify areas for improvement. Borrowers earn a rebate from Freddie Mac on new loans as an incentive to make this assessment. The program is open to multifamily properties with more than 20 units. Voluntarily reporting a property's ENERGY STAR Score with the loan documentation triggers the rebate.

This effort could help make multifamily properties more affordable and improve their overall quality. To reinforce our commitment, Freddie Mac Multifamily plans to report the ENERGY STAR scores eventually in our K-Deal mortgage-backed securities.

More than a dozen cities and counties across the country, including some of the largest, require energy tracking and reporting through Portfolio Manager. We encourage the whole industry to adopt the tool to help increase energy-efficient rental housing.

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