Vonovia SE: Survey: Tenants are expecting sharp rise in energy prices
/ Key word(s): Study
Survey commissioned by Vonovia
- A survey shows that over 90% of people living in a rented accommodation are expecting higher energy prices.
- Just over 80% of respondents prefer higher on-account payments to large year-end balance payments. Payments can easily be adjusted via the Vonovia app, over the phone or by letter.
- Vonovia is steadily developing its own green energy supply, while maintaining stable prices for its customers.
- Respondents find all-inclusive rental fees highly attractive.
Nearly half of all respondents said that their on-account advance payments have so far always matched their annual usage, but there are currently increasing concerns that year-end balance payments are set to rise. Until now, according to the survey, 54.7% of tenants have had to make only minor balance payments for their energy consumption at the end of the year, or even none at all.
"Our customers need to be in a position to plan their budgets. They want to know how much heating and electricity are costing them, and it's therefore important that they don't face unexpected year-end balance payments in addition to the on-account payments they've made already," says Stephen Guhr, Energy Services Director at Vonovia. "It's important to make provisions for the next accounting period. To do so, our customers can easily adjust their on-account payments without any red tape - over the phone, by letter, or with a few clicks in our tenancy app."
Again, the result of the survey was very clear: If the cost of energy increases, more than 80% of respondents would prefer to make higher monthly on-account payments than building up reserves for a higher balance payment at the end of the year.
Energy-efficient refurbishments as an effective remedy
To keep future energy prices at predictable levels for tenants, Vonovia has introduced a range of measures in recent years. They include step-by-step building upgrades, especially energy-efficient modernisation and the replacement of heating systems. With an annual refurbishment rate of around 3% on average, the Bochum-based company is a leader in the industry.
The survey shows that large parts of the population agree that this is the right way forward. Nearly 63% of tenants in flats see such refurbishments as effective ways to achieve long-term reductions in the cost of energy.
In particular, Vonovia has made massive progress in expanding its solar panel infrastructure within its neighbourhoods, while also implementing a locally generated solar power scheme. "From now on, any solar panels that are installed on our buildings are capable of producing tenant-generated electricity," says Guhr. "It means that our tenants can obtain green power at stable prices directly from their own roofs via our Energy Service division. This is sustainable, and it makes us less dependent on fluctuating energy prices in the market," Guhr adds. By 2030, Vonovia wants to equip around 17,000 roofs with solar panels, rising to 30,000 by 2050.
Any Vonovia customers whose roofs are not yet equipped with solar panels can buy green electricity from Vonovia Energie Service GmbH.
All-inclusive rent as an attractive model
Schemes whereby tenants pay an all-inclusive rental fee are particularly common in Scandinavia and turned out to be popular among respondents. Around 53% would prefer such a rental fee, i.e. a fixed amount that includes utility bills. They feel it would give them greater security in budgeting the overall cost of their tenancy.
As a first step in this direction and to explore the potential benefits, Vonovia is currently implementing its first Energiesprong project in Bochum.
The project almost halves the on-site construction period when modernising a building. First, each building is given a 3D scan, allowing the accurate prefabrication of façade panels to the nearest millimetre. All that remains to be done on site is the actual assembly. Combined with the installation of solar panels, once the refurbishment has been completed, each house will generate enough green energy to provide heat, hot water and electricity for the residents' households. As the entire energy is 100% renewable, carbon emissions will be reduced to zero. Moreover, despite a high level of energy quality and superior indoor comfort, the cost of living - depending on the tenants' individual consumer behaviour - is apparently not set to rise.
In this way, Vonovia is planning to gradually upgrade over 2,800 flats by 2024.
The mechanics of the survey:
The company, which is based in Bochum, has been listed on the stock exchange since 2013. Since September 2015 Vonovia has been a constituent in the DAX 30 (today DAX 40) and since September 2020 in the EURO STOXX 50. Vonovia SE is also a constituent of additional national and international indices, including DAX 50 ESG, Dow Jones Sustainability Index Europe, STOXX Global ESG Leaders, EURO STOXX ESG Leaders 50, STOXX Europe ESG Leaders 50, FTSE EPRA/NAREIT Developed Europe, and GPR 250 World. Vonovia has a workforce of more than 16,000 employees (Deutsche Wohnen included).
This press release has been issued by Vonovia SE and/or its subsidiaries solely for information purposes. This press release may contain statements, assumptions, opinions and predictions about the anticipated future development of Vonovia ("forward-looking statements") that reproduce various assumptions regarding, e.g., results derived from Vonovia's current business or from publicly available sources that have not been subject to an independent audit or in-depth evaluation by Vonovia and that may turn out to be incorrect at a later stage. All forward-looking statements express current expectations based on the current business plan and various other assumptions and therefore come with risks and uncertainties that are not insignificant. All forward-looking statements should not therefore be taken as a guarantee for future performance or results and, furthermore, do not necessarily constitute exact indicators that the forecast results will be achieved. All forward-looking statements relate solely to the day on which this press release was issued to its recipients. It is the responsibility of the recipients of this press release to conduct a more detailed analysis of the validity of forward-looking statements and the underlying assumptions. Vonovia accepts no responsibility for any direct or indirect damages or losses or subsequent damages or losses, as well as penalties that the recipients may incur by using the press release, its contents and, in particular, all forward-looking statements or in any other way, as far as this is legally permissible. Vonovia does not provide any guarantees or assurances (either explicitly or implicitly) in respect of the information contained in this press release. Vonovia is not obliged to update or correct the information, forward-looking statements or conclusions drawn in this press release or to include subsequent events or circumstances or to report inaccuracies that become known after the date of this press release.
24.11.2021 Dissemination of a Corporate News, transmitted by DGAP - a service of EQS Group AG.
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