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  • Climate strategy: climate-neutral property stock by 2040
  • Sustainable building in accordance with Gold standard of German Sustainable
  • Building Council
  • Issuance of green corporate bonds
  • Customer satisfaction continues to be highest priority

 

Today, Deutsche Wohnen published its Sustainability Report for the reporting year 2020. In this report the company provides information about the progress it is making with its commitment to sustainability and sets itself ambitious goals for the future.

Michael Zahn, the CEO of Deutsche Wohnen SE, summarises the situation as follows: “Thanks to our ongoing investment in building shells, building technology and energy-efficient refurbishment work, we have today one of the most climate-friendly portfolios in our sector. Consequently, we have set ourselves the target of achieving climate neutrality in our holdings in less than 20 years. We are involving our tenants in our journey towards this target and are designing all our investments to be socially responsible.”

Solar cell systems Berlin Hellersdorf © GRAND VISIONS, Berlin

Climate-neutral holdings by 2040

The success of the climate transition will also be decided in the property sector because currently it is responsible for a third of the country’s CO2 emissions. As part of this sector, Deutsche Wohnen is aware of its responsibilities and wants to lead the way with ambitious climate goals. Accordingly, it is planned to make the company’s property holdings climate-neutral by as early as 2040. Building on the work it has already done in previous years, Deutsche Wohnen will invest above all in the energy-efficient refurbishments of its buildings and in the low-carbon generation of heat and electricity. To achieve this, it is critically important to deploy solar cell systems and to interlink local heat and hot water generation with efficient combined heat and power (CHP) plants. Equally, it is intended that climate-friendly new builds, building automation and smart applications for regulating heating should contribute to achieving the goal of climate neutrality. By adopting these measures, Deutsche Wohnen will reduce its current CO2 intensity of 33 kg CO2e/m2 to below 12 kg CO2e/m2 by 2040. In so doing, the company will achieve the target corridor for practically climate-neutral holdings which has been defined as a reliable standard by the Initiative Wohnen 2050 (IW.2050), an association of housing companies.

Deutsche Wohnen wants to make this journey towards climate-neutral holdings together with its tenants. Against this background, it reinforces the promise it made to its tenants that no tenant needs to be worried that their flat will become unaffordable in the face of rent adjustments or as a result of refurbishment measures. For the company, a further key pillar in its efforts to achieve these climate goals is its “Plan for socially responsible climate protection in the property sector”, which was published in summer 2020. The proposal aims to use revenue from the Energy and Climate Fund, which is financed by the CO2 levy, to significantly reduce the modernisation costs that can be passed on to the tenant. This would resolve the climate protection / housing costs dilemma.

Sustainable building in accordance with Gold standard of the German Sustainable Building Council

With an investment volume of more than EUR 7 billion, Deutsche Wohnen will, in future, strengthen its efforts to build new housing, especially in attractive metropolitan and growth regions. The company sees itself as having a responsibility to create liveable neighbourhoods that are fit for the future – and to do so sustainably. All our new builds are to be certified in future by the German Sustainable Building Council – at the very least with its Gold standard. The award means that the entire life cycle of a property is taken into consideration and ensures that high sustainability standards are made binding.

Issuance of green corporate bonds

At the end of the first quarter 2021 and in order to create an even stronger link between its sustainability strategy and its financing requirements, Deutsche Wohnen issued for the first time two green corporate bonds on the capital markets in a total amount of EUR 1 billion. The net proceeds from the issue will be used to finance green projects. This will enable the company in future to increase its investment in the construction of climate-friendly buildings and in the energy-efficient refurbishment of its existing holdings. This successful issuance is also clear evidence of the attractiveness and durability of the company’s business model and a clear signal to Deutsche Wohnen that it should pursue its sustainability strategy consistently and make a key contribution to the provision of sustainable housing in Germany.

Continued focus on customer satisfaction

The satisfaction of its tenants has the highest priority for Deutsche Wohnen. To this end, a central customer service unit was created last year with the aim of designing processes to be faster, more transparent and more customer-friendly in future. The results of the tenants’ survey from the third quarter 2020 show that Deutsche Wohnen is on the right path with the measures it has taken. According to the survey, 9 out of 10 tenants are satisfied with their flat (2019: 87%). Moreover, satisfaction with Deutsche Wohnen as a company rose by comparison with the previous year from 78% to 82%. The results of this annual survey motivate us to continue to invest in process optimisation and customer satisfaction.

Unusual actions are needed in unusual times. In order to protect residential and commercial tenants who had got into payment difficulties as a result of the corona pandemic, the company established its own corona support fund in an amount of EUR 30 million in 2020. In this way, Deutsche Wohnen is contributing to ensure that financial difficulties do not lead to social hardship. It is planned to continue with this fund in 2021 so that support can be provided quickly.

The current Sustainability Report is available for download via the following link: https://www.deutsche-wohnen.com/en/about-us/company/sustainability. The report complements the Annual Report and the magazine, offering detailed information about Deutsche Wohnen’s understanding of sustainability and its achievements in the five areas of action listed in the report: responsible company management, responsibility for customers and properties, responsibility for employees, responsibility for the environment and the climate, and responsibility for society.


Deutsche Wohnen

Deutsche Wohnen is one of the leading publicly listed residential property companies in Europe. The business focus of the company is on managing its own portfolio of residential properties in dynamic metropolitan regions and conurbations in Germany. Deutsche Wohnen sees itself as having both a social responsibility and a duty to maintain and newly develop good-quality and affordable housing in vibrant residential neighbourhoods. As at 31 December 2020, the portfolio comprised a total of around 155,400 residential and 2,900 commercial units. Deutsche Wohnen SE is listed in the Deutsche Börse’s DAX and is also included in the leading indices EPRA/NAREIT, STOXX Europe 600, GPR 250 and DAX 50 ESG.

Important note

This publication is neither an offer to sell nor a solicitation to buy securities.

To the extent that this document contains forward-looking statements, these are not facts and are recognisable by such words as ‘will’, ‘expect’, ‘believe’, ‘estimate’, ‘intend’, ‘endeavour’, ‘assume’ and similar expressions. These statements express the intentions, opinions or current expectations and assumptions of Deutsche Wohnen and the individuals acting in concert with it. The forward-looking statements are based on current plans, estimates and forecasts that Deutsche Wohnen and the individuals acting in concert with it have made to the best of their knowledge, but do not make any claims as to their future accuracy. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that are generally difficult to predict and are usually not within the control of Deutsche Wohnen or the individuals acting in concert with it. It should be remembered that the actual results or consequences may differ considerably from those mentioned or contained in the forward-looking statements.

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