Live better in a beautiful, affordable, planet friendly home

The SMARTER Finance for Families initiative knows that keeping your home healthy, comfortable and affordable is key to living well.

When your home is certified green:

  • It’s comfortable all year round – it’s airy not draughty, warm not stuffy
  • You pay less each month because you save on utility bills, healthcare, home repairs and fuel. Annual savings for green homes can be equal to one or two mortgage payments per year.
  • It’s quiet indoors – there’s less noise from neighbours with well insulated walls and floors
  • You experience bright daylight streaming in, giving you a sense of well being and helping you to sleep better at night
  • Easy access to everyday activities and public transport connections
  • Waste recycling facilities nearby
  • Your home has a better resale value
  • Your home has been constructed with care for resources and the environment

Over 8000 homes certified in our partner countries

Did you know that over 8,000 new homes have been registered and certified green in Ireland, Czech Republic, Italy and Romania. The SMARTER initiative aims to drive change in the finance and green certification of new sustainable homes.

Backed by the European Commission’s EU H2020 programme, 17 organisations from 14 countries have come together to make this change. Join us to realise our vision for a world where we all live in high-quality healthy homes that are comfortable and affordable while enhancing the planet’s prosperity.

How will we do this?

With third party certification for green homes and discounted mortgages, householders will be rewarded for choosing better quality homes with wonderful benefits such as clean air indoors, bright natural daylight, energy efficiency, water saving, low carbon and less noise intrusion.

What are SMARTER objectives?

Our key objective is to secure two partners – a financial partner and a residential developer to design and launch a co-branded discounted green mortgage product for the acquisition of new build properties. A Green Home Green Mortgage Product uses third party certification aligned to EU Taxonomy for sustainable finance, CEN standards and national regulations.

Our partners RoGBC, IrishGBC, CZGBC and GBCItalia will use their existing certification as the qualifying mechanism for the green mortgage product in their countries. Other partners PLGBC, SKGBC, GreenBuilding Council BiH, UEUA will develop their Green home Green mortgage certification and product in their countries. Partners such as CRES, People in Need, EnEffect, EEC Georgia are developing programmes through green loans for renovation with a focus on overcoming energy poverty.

Copenhagen Centre on Energy Efficiency (DTU) and Universite Libre de Brussels act as expert advisors to the project. More technical expertise from SMEs TURKECO, ENOVA and CRISCON apply their experience and knowledge for research findings and reporting to develop a world class GHGM programme that aligns with EU CEN standards and EU taxonomy for sustainable finance.

 Why are we doing it?

Buildings contribute to carbon emissions at different stages and affect the atmosphere by:

  • The way raw materials are extracted and manufactured
  • How the materials are put together during construction
  • How we live in them
  • Where they are located
  • What happens to them at the end of their life

Buildings in Europe consume 40% of energy and produce 36% of CO emissions. The building industry also produces 30% of all waste generated  waste.

SMARTER is developing the Green Home Green Mortgage programme in different countries to stimulate demand of low carbon, energy efficient green homes to slow down and reduce the volume of CO emissions in the building industry. If banks collaborate with the programme in providing reduced mortgages they will become part of the solution for protecting our planet and improving the quality of life and wellbeing of people

What is a green building?


Our partners’ certification is aligned to EU CEN standards, EU directives and supported by EEFIG, DG Energy, DG Environment and the EU taxonomy on sustainable finance.

What will you gain?

If you are a developer you will benefit by marketing a certified green home to a new generation of homebuyers who prioritise a high quality of life, homes that are environmentally friendly,  interested in contributing positively both to their health and wellbeing and the planet.

If you are a homebuyer or householder – find a new green home with green certification, ask your bank for a green mortgage. This guarantees your home will be durable, have less maintenance, be energy efficient, be bright and airy with no draughts. And even better, you will spend less each month  because of a lower total monthly cost of ownership*. This gives you more choices for you depending on what you’d like to save or spend on.

“Through the SMARTER Finance For Families project we bring an innovative and systemic solution to a systemic problem. We are creating significant opportunities for the finance and building industry to deliver the green performance we need for Europe’s citizens and their home”
– Steven Borncamp, Project Director of the initiative

Green Finance is an important and developing trend that is increasing investments into environmentally and socially responsible projects while reducing financial risk to those lending for those projects. This concept creates a tremendous opportunity to positively transform the health and environmental performance, quality, comfort and financial viability of Europe’s new and existing housing stock.

SMARTER Finance for Families is a Horizon 2020 project to implement ambitious yet practical Green Homes & Green Mortgage programs in 12 European countries that includes the collaboration and participation of 17 expert green building, green energy, research and other organizations.

*Lower total monthly cost of ownership  – the sum of savings on lower monthly mortgage, lower maintenance costs, utility bills, improved well being and less sick days and medical bills.


The project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under Grant Agreement No. 847141.

Get in touch

Steven Borncamp

Project Director, SMARTER Finance for Families at Romania Green Building Council