OakNorth Bank has completed an £8.6m loan to housebuilder Verto. The capital will be used to finance the development of two new residential schemes across the South of Cornwall – both of which being a collection of Verto’s Zero Carbon Smart Homes.
The Falmouth site consists of 22 detached homes and eight apartments, while a development in Mylor will consist of 18 detached bungalows, including eight affordable units.
Verto’s Zero Carbon Smart Homes produce their own renewable energy through photovoltaic solar panels integrated into the roof. Homes are equipped with triple-glazed argon-filled windows and super-insulation – which result in almost zero heat loss or noise pollution. The homes use a zonal underfloor heating system, so that only rooms in use are heated, and instead of conventional gas boilers, they use ground-source heat pumps (GSHP) and air-source heat pumps (ASHP). A mechanical ventilation system with in-built heat recovery ensures the heat being created is used.
If the home produces more electricity than is needed, it will automatically feed any excess back into the national grid for a profit, or alternatively may be used to charge an electric vehicle.
Tom Carr, Co-Founder of Verto, commented on the transaction: “With nearly a quarter of carbon emissions coming from buildings, our mission is to build the UK’s most advanced sustainable smart homes, creating the perfect environment inside, without harming the environment outside. Hemesh and the OakNorth Bank team operated quickly and transparently, with the entrepreneurial approach and commercial acumen that was promised. We are continually building our pipeline of projects and helping more people move towards a zero-carbon lifestyle, across a wider demographic and geography, so are glad to be working with a Bank that is not only willing to support us financially, but also shares our commitment to the environment.”
Hemesh Patel, Property Finance Director at OakNorth Bank, added: “As one of the first banks globally to achieve net carbon zero for Scope 1 and 2 emissions, we are incredibly proud to be supporting a business that is pioneering such positive change in the property industry. Verto and its team have successfully completed several developments in the South West – all with the same zero carbon credentials, and all of which were 100% sold off-plan – they clearly know what they’re doing. Much like Tesla did for the electric car market, Verto is making zero-carbon living an exciting and achievable reality by combining state-of-the-art technologies, with stylish design. We look forward to continuing to work with the business in the future and helping in its fight for zero on the home front.”