Trowers advises believe housing on the first ever sustainability-linked private placement for a housing association


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International law firm Trowers & Hamlins has advised believe housing on an £85m sustainability-linked private placement with Legal and General in what is a sector first for a housing association.

believe housing is one of the largest housing associations in the north east of England covering 862 square miles, from the north Pennines, to Durham city centre and across to the coast in the east.

The private placement, which has a maturity of 37.5 years and a deferred funding element, is the first of its kind in the capital markets as it links the pricing of the notes to the company's energy efficiency, which is in line with two of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals for climate action and sustainable cities and communities. 
 
Trowers also advised on the linked refinancing of believe housing's existing LSVT loan which now gives it capacity to meet its development programme of 1,250 new homes by 2026. 
 
Trowers real estate finance team acted on all the property security aspects of the private placement and wider refinancing, carrying out due diligence on almost 18,000 properties.

Banking and Finance partner Neil Waller, commented:

"We are really pleased to have supported believe housing on this transformational project, which will lay the foundations for their financing structure for many years to come."

Alan Smith, Executive Director of Investment, Growth and Performance at believe housing said:

“This funding will guarantee that our vision of a life without barriers can be brought to more people right across the region. Being an award-winning housing association is about helping people into work, providing high-quality advice and supporting the voluntary groups that make a difference in our communities.

“This private placement is part of a £1/4bn package of investment that will help us to grow our new home construction programme, improve existing homes and increase our investment and support in communities. It’s great news for us, and the affordable housing sector as a whole, that major private sector funders share our passion for doing the right thing for customers, for the business and for the environment too.”

The banking team was led by Neil Waller with Sophia Bell, Jane Kirkham, Azimina Fozdar and Aishah Mansur-Nobi assisting. The real estate finance team was led by partner Melanie Comer, with Nicola Almond and Jo Judge assisting.

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