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Environmental Upgrade Finance

Businesses in Wellington Shire Council can access Environmental Upgrade Finance for projects that help them save money and improve their economic and environmental performance. Wellington Shire Council has partnered with Better Building Finance to offer this to local businesses.

What is Environmental Upgrade Finance?

Environmental Upgrade Finance (EUF) is a loan for building upgrade works, repaid via quarterly council rates. A lender provides the upfront capital for the works, which the business then repays through the council rates system. Council then remits it back to the lender. Watch this helpful video from our partner, Sustainable Australia Fund for a quick overview on what Environmental Upgrade Finance involves.

How does it work?

EUF involves a three-way agreement between the business owner, council, and lender. It provides an incentive for building owners to upgrade their infrastructure and improve the value of their property.

Key features:

  • Fixed interest, quarterly repayments made via a local council charge
  • Up to 100% project finance, including hard and soft costs
  • Loan terms can extend from 5 to 20 years to maximise business cashflow
  • Loans are tied to the building, not the business owner, making them easily transferrable if the building is sold
  • Landlords can split repayments with tenants, with both parties benefiting from the upgrade
  • No requirement for personal, business or other forms of security to be provided

What are the benefits?

  • Reduced business operating costs
  • Positive cashflow outcome 
  • Security from volatile energy markets
  • Media and promotional opportunities
  • A better working environment
  • Environmental leadership in the community

What can be funded?

  • Solar PV systems
  • Energy efficiency upgrades and retrofits
  • Lighting upgrades e.g. LED, lighting controls and daylight sensors
  • Heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems
  • Efficient control equipment e.g. power control of motors, pumps, boilers and air heating/cooling systems
  • Water harvestings, filtration, recycling and treatment for re-use

Am I eligible?

To qualify, applicants need to meet the eligibility criteria listed below as well as any credit criteria set by the lender:

  • Upgrade to existing buildings, located on rateable land within the council boundaries
  • The proposed works should deliver a positive and quantifiable environmental outcome such as energy and/or water savings or waste minimisation
  • Must be up to date on all rates and charges due to council
  • Property type must be predominantly non-residential (such as commercial or industrial) and not be owned by a self-managed superannuation fund.

Learn more about eligibility by contacting Better Building Finance.

How do I apply?

  1. Scope the environmental upgrade project with a contractor
  2. Better Building Finance can help connect businesses with participating lenders
  3. Lender provides the upfront capital for the upgrade project
  4. Owner (and/or tenant) makes repayments via an Environmental Upgrade Charge (EUC) on council rates


Have a look at the frequently asked questions on the Better Building Finance website.


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