A build-to-rent development in Perth has been certified carbon neutral under the government’s Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard for Buildings, with claims it could be the first nationally.

Featuring 264 apartments under the banner, Element 27, the project is managed and leased by developer Sentinel Fund Manager Australia, the Australian arm of US property investment firm Sentinel Real Estate.

President Michael Streicker explained the build-to-rent model was uniquely placed in the residential market to afford continued monitoring and management of properties’ environmental performance.

“The developer’s continued role in management of the building following design and construction means it is possible to track, benchmark and publish residential environmental performance in ways that differ from the traditional residential strata model,” Mr Streicker said. 

“The developer has a continued responsibility and can ensure the building performs to high sustainability standards once occupied.”

Perth build-to-rent development, Element 27, is the country’s first residential apartments to be certified carbon neutral under the government’s Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard for Buildings.

Claiming an impressive 8-star NatHERS rating, the building’s sustainability features include rooftop solar panels, a rainwater and grey-water recycling system, specialty waste streams, access to a centralised geothermal system, energy efficient appliances, occupancy sensors and an embedded metering network. 

To achieve carbon neutral certification a number of operational factors were assessed including stabilisation, greenhouse gas emissions, waste from operations, refrigerant impacts and transport emissions.

The developer worked closely with the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) and Climate Active to develop a certification methodology through the Green Star Performance pathway that was applicable to the build-to-rent model.

GBCA chief executive Davina Rooney congratulated the company on pushing standards forward in the emissions-intensive residential market 

“The residential sector is responsible for over 50 per cent of Australia’s building related emissions and the Build to Rent sector has an opportunity to set clear leading goals in this space by bringing investor drivers to the residential market,” Ms Rooney said. 

Element 27 was the first purpose-built institutional build-to-rent community in Australia, with phase one completed and occupied in April 2019. The second phase of the project is due to be completed in September and construction on the third phase is expected to begin early next year.

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