Fleet Mortgages + Pepper Money

Fleet and Pepper set out ESG initiatives

Fleet Mortgages and Pepper Money have announced their new ESG strategies.

Fleet Mortgages

Fleet Mortgages has outlined its new ESG policy statement, and the proactive steps it will take in order to achieve the actions set out in it.

The ESG strategy aims to: 

  • minimise the impact the business has on the environment 
  • make a positive contribution to all stakeholders, including staff, customers, suppliers and those who live in and around Fleet and Hampshire
  • have fit-for-purpose, transparent governance structures in place to help run a business staff can be proud of

The company has split its policy into three parts, outlining the steps its staff and the business can take in order to meet these ambitions.

For the environment, Fleet will look to reduce the amount of carbon emissions caused by travel by offering staff the option to work from home, as well as cut printing, postage, stationery, waste disposal costs, and the amount of electricity used.

In addition, it will offer green mortgage products to advisers and their landlord customers.

For the social aspect, the lender has committed to supporting more members of staff obtain professional qualifications and continue their charitable work, integrating employee wellbeing into health and safety, and balancing teams in terms of gender diversity in all management groups.

It also aims to fill vacancies, where possible, through apprenticeship schemes or staff-introduced candidates.

Meanwhile, in terms of governance, Fleet is working towards a number of outcomes, including having a diverse mix of non-executive and executive directors on the board and the effective deployment of governance meetings.

As part of its ESG strategy, the lender has introduced measurable targets across all the areas and will assess the progress regularly.

Jannie Vermeulen, co-founder and chief risk officer at Fleet Mortgages, said: “One of our core values at Fleet is that we run a business we can be proud to work for. . . and ESG offers us the opportunity to embrace this in different ways. 

“It’s an opportunity to be mindful of the impact our business has on the environment.  

“As one of the largest employers in Fleet, it also means we want to make a positive contribution in our community, and we set the very highest standards in the way we conduct ourselves.

“Our ESG policy not only outlines what we want to achieve in these three areas, but how we intend to go about it, how we measure our progress and the outcomes we ideally will get from that activity.

“This is not rocket science — everyone can make a contribution and lead from any chair; what we have done here is simply plotting a path to make meaningful contributions across the ESG piece.”

Pepper Money

Pepper Money has launched a new initiative to help customers to make their homes more energy-efficient as part of its ESG-driven lending strategy.

The company is now offering customers a free energy efficiency survey, EPC certificate and tailored action plan.

If the action plan requires expenditure to complete the work, Pepper Money could offer customers a second-charge mortgage to help finance the improvements. 

For any customers who undertake the suggested works, a second EPC can also be claimed to validate the improvements.

Laurence Morey, CEO at Pepper Money, said: “At Pepper Money, we understand that we have an active role to play to change the way our industry is impacting our environment. 

“We know this won’t happen overnight, but will be the result of many consistent positive changes and helping our customers to better understand the impact they and their properties have on the environment. 

“With this in mind, we are really pleased to be able to launch this initiative that offers our customers a free EPC survey, certificate, and action plan. 

“And, of course, we will look to help them finance any work that is required to make their homes more energy efficient with one of our second-charge mortgage products.

Danny Belton, head of lender relationships at Legal & General Mortgage Club, added: "This is a strong statement of intent by Pepper Money, which has recognised the size of the challenge currently facing the industry. 

“By providing free EPCs and an option for customers to borrow to make improvements, this initiative is directly enabling positive outcomes. 

“In the long term, this will mean that not only will more customers have an accurate picture of the current state of their property, but also that they will have access to the knowledge and resources they need to make their homes more environmentally efficient."

In line with its ongoing commitment to ESG, Pepper Money also improved its criteria to remove restrictions around properties with solar panels in January, and launched a partnership with Ecologi last year.

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