Welcome to our 2019 / 2020 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report

Introduction

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Our vision is that

Everyone has a Home

Motivated by our vision that everyone has a home, we are proud to continue to help as many people as possible to live in safe, affordable, good-quality housing in communities they are proud to call home. 

Through our inaugural annual ESG report, we demonstrate our environmental responsibility, how our activities have a positive impact on people in our communities, as well as a robust governance framework. The report should be read in conjunction with our Framework for Sustainable Finance.

In the year to 31 March 2020, we invested over £198 million and built more than 1,000 homes, providing almost 3,000 people with access to new affordable housing. Our development programme is focused on building new homes with a range of housing options, whilst maintaining a strong programme of affordable rented homes as well as supporting housing development in rural communities.

We also partnered with East Boro Housing Trust, (East Boro) and were delighted to welcome over 150 new colleagues to the Group on 31 March 2020. Social impact is a key priority in the delivery of our growth strategy. Growth supports our commitment to do things in an ethical way, and we consider a range of options to work in partnerships to enhance our social impact in our communities.

We made significant investments in our homes, going above and beyond compliance and investing £62.8 million maintaining and improving our existing properties and £9.2 million on a range of health and fire safety measures. We make the best use of our assets by improving the quality of shared communal areas and investing in the estates in which they live to help create communities that people are proud of. We maximise the use of our land to deliver more homes and community facilities. Within our communities we aim to make a positive contribution towards a net carbon reduction, improve the energy efficiency of our stock and limit the impact on the environment.

This year also saw us continue to work towards every one of our homes receiving an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of ‘C’ or above by 2025, five years ahead of the Government target, and through the Warm Homes fund we are pleased to have been able to reduce the impact of fuel poverty for 81% of customers involved in the scheme.

Listening and responding to the opinions of customers and the feedback from over 4,000 customers in our latest full customer survey, has played an important part in shaping decisions that we have made this year and has resulted in a number of services being enhanced and improved.

Through the Aster Foundation we continue to empower our customers to sustain their tenancies and improve their life chances, enabling their independence, creating a lasting legacy through our thriving communities and sustaining the workforce of the future. It also looks to develop innovative ways to create environmentally active partnerships and embed our sustainability approach across our communities - targeting our investment at the places we can make the most impact, will help deliver social value to our customers.

Throughout 2019 and 2020, we continued to evolve our digital offer to make it as easy as possible for customers to access the information they need when they need it. And with almost 12,000 customers registered for MyAster, an interactive self-service app that allows customers to book repairs and manage their data, we’re looking at more ways to provide instant access to the things that matter to our customers.

Bjorn Howard, Group CEO

Report Structure

How our work aligns with the UN Sustainable Development Goals

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