Integral part of policy
We are convinced that our investment strategy – with an integrated ESG/SDG approach – delivers a sustainable return; a return with a positive impact for our shareholders, our tenants and society at large.
Since 2008, sustainability has been an integral part of investment policy and its implementation. As a result, our portfolios now meet most of the current sustainability requirements. This is also reflected in the scores we achieve in the Global Real Estate Benchmark (GRESB). From the beginning, we have participated in this GRESB benchmark and we have succeeded in continuously improving the scores of our funds. In 2019 we achieved the number one position in GRESB for our residential and retail portfolio in the category non-listed real estate funds in the Netherlands.
6 Sustainability & ESG pillars
In our vision, a sustainable real estate portfolio is also a future-proof portfolio with a better and realistic perspective of an optimal ratio between return and risk. A (pro-)active policy on sustainability & ESG is effective, because sustainability can also yield returns and additional costs (both opex/capex and management costs) can be avoided in the future.
Our policy is pragmatic and focused on achieving measurable results (for both investor and tenant). We pursue an optimal application of sustainability promoting measures. That is why we mainly opt for proven and accepted solutions, materials and techniques. With ‘pilots’ we regularly explore new technology and its applicability.
1. Increasing sustainability of property portfolio
We make our current properties more sustainable by focusing on savings, greening and generation. In doing so, we focus on gas, electricity, water, waste, greenhouse gas emissions and other environmental aspects (such as climate adaptation, biodiversity and circularity). We apply this way of working to both our real estate and our organisation.
2. Acquisition of sustainable properties
The purchase of (new) properties contributes to the high level of sustainability of the property portfolio, because the legal requirements (Buildings Decree) have become more strict and we, included in our Schedule of Requirements, set even higher requirements with regard to sustainability. Sustainability is also assessed when existing buildings are purchased and we provide buildings with GPR or BREEAM certification.
3. Property as part of the environment
Altera’s mission is to ensure that real estate delivers both a financial performance for the investor ànd a positive social contribution for the tenant. Our approach focuses on tenant satisfaction: a good and constructive relationship with tenants helps in the effective use of a sustainable housing complex. Sustainability is also part of this: our commitment is to reduce the additional housing costs for tenants by means of energy-saving measures. In addition, we are committed to improve the (mutual) involvement of tenants by taking measures relating to safety, health and welfare and biodiversity.
4. Transparency & benchmarking
The measurability of sustainability and ESG is improving. The advantage of measurable and tangible results is that stakeholders can rely on them and we can also make better decisions, both policy-wise and operationally. We systematically collect data at property level and have a solid and reliable picture of the sustainability of the portfolio. The portfolio level is also measured by participating in, among others, UN PRI and GRESB.
Altera has drawn up a policy statement with regard to the ISO 14001 certified environmental management system. This can be requested by e-mail.
5. Investment in human capital
Altera attaches great value to human capital and therefore invests in the development and improvement of the knowledge and skills of all its colleagues and in their well-being, safety and health and satisfaction. It is not only about primary working conditions, but also about work-life balance, opportunities to develop, the culture of cooperation and decisiveness.
6. Organisational implementation
To ensure the proper implementation of the sustainability policy, Altera focuses on internal implementation by securing the commitment of Altera employees and integrating the sustainability policy into the existing processes. For external implementation, Altera focuses on aligning the principles with the sustainability policy and activities of third parties.
Sustainability in a broader context
Making real estate portfolios future-proof goes further than just focussing on energy, water and waste. Sustainable and socially responsible policy also means giving substance to human rights, labour, the environment and anti-corruption.
‘Sustainability of real estate’ is broadening: ESG and the UN SDG will become a part of this. That is why we consider sustainability from a broader perspective.
Bringing together the interests of investor and tenant
Sustainability to us means striking the right balance between the financial aspects of investments and the advantages for the tenant. Sustainable real estate has a better market position as it is more lettable and less likely to be sensitive to economic and technical obsolescence. Lowering energy bills leads to lower rent, which makes homes more affordable, a clear benefit for tenants.
Measuring our impact through concrete objectives
The state of affairs and progress are regularly reported to our shareholders. The results of benchmarks (such as GRESB and UN PRI) are also reported. In addition, we have achieved ISO14001 certification and, since 2019, we have had the ESG KPIs audited by the auditor. This gives stakeholders even more comfort about the reliability of the figures.