Kelson Group is the first property management company in Northern Alberta to have its multi-family apartment buildings recognized under the Canadian Certified Rental Building Program (CCRBP). The company’s certified properties are in Edmonton, Leduc, Sherwood Park, and Grande Prairie, AB.
The CCRBP is North America’s first quality assurance program that specifically promotes and acknowledges quality for rental housing consumers, and professionalism for multi-family property managers and their staff. Launched in 2008 in Toronto by the Federation of Rental-housing Providers of Ontario (FRPO), the program expanded to British Columbia in 2015. The Kelson Group adopted this program and had its first certified buildings in BC in 2016.
The program is a huge game-changer when it comes to the rental industry in Canada. Apartment-shoppers who choose a CCRBP building enjoy enhanced peace of mind, knowing that their apartment community meets defined standards for quality and service – simply it means tenants can rent with confidence.
CCRBP Certification Director Ted Whitehead said, “With the added impetus of an increasing number of multi-family companies adopting Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) as a strategic business imperative, we expect that over the next 18 months this program will help build a national network of professional multi-family property managers whose focus will go far beyond financial measures to incorporate factors measuring the sustainability and ethical impacts of their investment.
Said Kelson Group President Jason Fawcett, “Our objective with the national CCRBP-approved apartment building program is to provide Edmonton, Sherwood Park, Leduc, and Grande Prairie renters with the peace of mind and a clear quality assurance alternative when selecting their rental apartment home. This certification is a win-win for our apartment renters and for all property management companies.”
Canadian Certification Director Ted Whitehead said, “For a multi-family apartment building to qualify as a Canadian Certified Rental Building it must meet five mandatory requirements:
Said Donna Monkhouse, Executive Director of the Albert Residential Landlord Association (ARLA), “We are happy to have our members participate in this important ‘for-renters’ initiative. At the heart of the Canadian Certified Rental Building Program are 54 standards of practice and associated requirements to which all organizations and buildings must adhere. These requirements translate the concepts of environmental, social and governance into concrete measures that focus on environmental and social responsibility and enhanced corporate accountability. We want renters to recognize that ARLA landlords care about their renters and the buildings in which they live.”
In the competitive real estate marketplace, internationally recognized ESG benchmark programs like the Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB) are taking on increased relevance and importance. Not only can CRB certification help enhance an organization’s GRESB benchmarking score, but now, in line with its national expansion, the program has moved from a recognized and approved green building certification program to officially becoming a GRESB Real Estate partner.
Said Whitehead, “As all levels of government gain greater awareness of the ESG mantra across all industries, there is little doubt that they will soon be asking – or perhaps, demanding – what our industry is doing collectively on this front. Ours is the foremost ESG-focused accreditation program supporting the multi-family industry. And, with many of the REITS, institutional and investor -driven members leading the multi-family industry’s transformation to an ESG discipline, it became imperative to expand this program across Canada. Adopting a strong multi-family ESG framework across the industry is necessary for the industry’s long-term regulatory survival.”
The multi‑family industry provides apartment homes to one in three Canadians, or approximately 4.4 million people. When you take in these numbers and couple them with Canada’s strong public commitment to environmental stewardship (e.g., climate change, Net Zero, clean energy) and mending the social issues of the day such as diversity, equality housing shortages, income disparities.
“There’s little doubt that there will be increased pressure on the multi-family industry to demonstrate what it is proactively doing to address these challenges on all fronts,” added Whitehead.
To date, nearly 13 per cent of multi-family industry companies in Canada have adopted a formal ESG way of doing business. “That number must dramatically increase if we are to proactively state our case on these fronts,” Whitehead said. “The good news is that most professional property management organizations practice ESG-related activities daily and they just don’t think of them that way. We believe the Canadian Certified Rental Building Program provides a visible grass-roots pathway for professional property managers/owners to move forward with confidence and success on the ESG front.”