Access Housing Joins forces with Power Ledger To Create Affordable Housing for Creative Community

Development Gives Artists Access to Lower-Priced Solar Energy

Perth, Western Australia — 9 August — Access Housing Australia affordable housing provider, has teamed up with Power Ledger the leading peer-to-peer marketplace for prosumers and consumers to trade renewable energy, to officially open WA’s first creative community development with more affordable and sustainably sourced energy at its core.

Featuring 12 residences and two art and creative studios, the development is being tenanted by members of the Fremantle-based Sustainable Housing for Artists and Creatives (SHAC) cooperative.

While Fremantle is well-known as a vibrant and creative city, low-moderate income earners like artists and creatives are finding it increasingly challenging to secure affordable housing in the area. By partnering with Power Ledger to include an embedded solar energy network in the new development, tenants are no longer required to solely rely on the mains grid for their electricity.

Instead, developer and owner, Access Housing will also become an energy retailer to the property, selling tenants electricity at reduced prices. This, in turn, eases the financial burden on tenants by providing them with a more provide affordable and sustainable source of electricity.

Annual savings for each tenant start at AU$300 due to decreased supply charges. And with over 74% of power being sourced from solar panels during a trial period, residents of the creative cooperative development can expect to see significantly reduced power bills as they rely less on the mains grid.

“SHAC members are key workers and contributors in the Fremantle economy and community,” said Access Housing Chief Executive Officer Garry Ellender.

“With this development having reached completion, these creative workers can now afford to reside within the Fremantle area and stay active in the well-recognised cultural and artistic fabric that the city is renowned for,” continued Ellender.

Mayor of Fremantle, Brad Pettit has expressed his support and enthusiasm for the project and its contribution to the city’s diversity. Members of Fremantle’s artistic community have also lauded the development as a critical step in ensuring that the city retains its special character amidst rising living costs.

“This development provides not only vital housing, but also the ability to ensure that energy is both sustainable and affordable for our residents. We are delighted to have collaborated with Access Housing and Power Ledger on this development, and hope that it is the first of many creative cooperative housing developments throughout Australia,” continued Ellender.

“We’re delighted to work on projects like these that are changing the way we use energy and deliver a modern, decentralised and low cost carbon structure to Fremantle. Power Ledger is proud of the benefits this community has been able to realise from our technology and we look forward to the evolution of similar sustainable projects across the globe,” concluded David Martin, MD of Power Ledger.

Fast Facts — Access Housing’s Property Development Program

(figures correct as at Wednesday 2 August 2017)

$60.26 million — the amount Access Housing has spent building or purchasing (completing) affordable homes since 2013 to tangibly increase the supply of affordable housing in WA. This total will go past $66.5 million upon completion of Access Housing’s Jervis Rise project (* see below).

270 — the number of affordable homes Access Housing has completed since 2013. This total will go to 321 upon completion of Access Housing’s Jervis Rise project (* see below).

117 — the number of affordable homes Access Housing completed in FY16/17.

191 — the number of affordable homes Access Housing has retained from its completed projects for social and affordable housing purposes.

19 — the number of affordable housing growth projects Access Housing has completed under its Community Housing Agreement with the Department of Communities (Housing) since 2013.

* 51 — the number of affordable homes currently under construction at Access Housing’s Jervis Rise development at Baldivis. Completion is due in the coming weeks and will offer a number of affordable rental and owner-occupier purchase opportunities.