Testimonial from French Social Housing Corporation Pays de Meaux Habitat

At the end of November, we had the pleasure to discuss with Christophe Maurice, General Manager of Pays de Meaux Habitat, a social landlord with 7,000 housing units in the Communauté d’Agglomération du Pays de Meaux (CAPM). During the conversation, we addressed the issue of energy performance, which is currently a top priority for social landlords.

Can you tell us about the structure of Pays de Meaux Habitat, and in particular about the teams in charge of your buildings?

Pays de Meaux Habitat employs around 115 people, including around 10 work-study students. Two departments are in charge of buildings: the Asset Management Department and the Development Department. The Property Management Department is responsible for the day-to-day upkeep of our properties, and is involved in regular renovations when properties are inspected, as well as upgrading common areas (garage, ventilation, heating, etc.). This department is made up of thirty wardens who ensure local contact, five site managers and two technicians to monitor GE-GR work and technical works linked to building operation. The Development Department employs 10 people, including 4 project managers, and is tasked with the overall renovation of buildings, including the eradication of thermal flaws.

What were your main motivations when you launched the Oxand Simeo™ deployment?

In the course of our energy performance assessment, we realized that of our 7,000 dwellings, around 2,500 were “heatwasters”. “Heatwasters” are dwellings with an energy performance rating of E, F or G, and will have to be eradicated by 2025 for G dwellings, 2028 for F dwellings and 2034 for E dwellings, respectively, according to the regulations. Faced with this urgent challenge of energetic renovation of buildings and decarbonization of our housing estate, we lacked a tool to steer the transformations of our assets. Oxand Simeo™ enables us to draw up a plan to meet these deadlines, and to optimize work planning also in line with the ageing and risks of each of our components.

How does this translate into operational terms?

So far, we have two technicians within the Asset Department who are involved for a few hours a month in running Oxand Simeo™, determining what renovation work needs to be done and updating the database. In practical terms, Oxand Simeo™ enables us to work on drawing up and updating our “Plan Stratégique de Patrimoine” (our Strategic Asset Plan, the PSP). This document has a 10-year deadline, but it’s a living document that’s bound to evolve every year, with evolving projections. Oxand Simeo™ provides us with precise knowledge of the ageing of our buildings and their energy performance, which is the key to building and updating our PSP.

What are your decision-making criteria when developing your work programs, and how does Oxand Simeo™ help you prioritize actions?

When designing work programs with my teams, it’s important to work on the “efficiency of the invested Euro“: if work is planned on a building, it must be a priority that the investments are the most useful for the “customer-tenant”. We have a duty to welcome tenants in the best possible conditions, maximizing their comfort. With Oxand Simeo™’s help, we can compare component data to reconcile these usage imperatives with energy performance imperatives. This ensures that we invest the right euro in the right place, something that would be far less easy without a decision-support tool like Oxand Simeo™.

You mention reconciling maintenance and energy performance requirements. Can you tell us more about the software’s added value in this area?

For homes with F and G labels, approximately 800 homes on our PMH site, we could draw up our work plan on our own: the urgency requires us to renovate them within the next 3 years. The added value of Oxand Simeo™ lies in its long-term prioritization: we set a direction, level out our investments to comply with regulations, and reduce the overall cost. For example, we have a lot of D rated dwellings, which benefit from this rating because they are geothermally heated. However, many of these homes could be considered “thermal passoires” due to their lack of insulation. By combining data on obsolescence and energy performance, we can go beyond the buildings currently rated F and G, and prioritize those rated E.

What are your expectations for Oxand Simeo™ over the next few years?

Oxand Simeo™ is an evolving tool and I’m looking forward to many developments over the next few years. At Pays de Meaux Habitat, we are fortunate to be involved in these developments as a partner, and so we participate in product evolution tests. By communicating with the Oxand team, we can relay our expectations and help the product evolve to meet our future needs.

“At Pays de Meaux Habitat, we are partners and supporters of the solution and very enthusiastic about the software’s future developments and ongoing innovations.”

What are the next steps in your journey with Oxand?

The next stage in our collaboration with Oxand comes at the beginning of next year, with the delivery of our final DPE (energy performance ratings) and the input of this data into the software. This will give us a complete overview of our assets on the software. The aim is to use the tool to present and explain changes to our PSP to the Board of Directors next year.

A final word on Oxand Simeo?

Data management is of paramount importance to us as social housing corporations: we have an impressive amount of data, but the difficulty lies in knowing how to use it. In particular, when employees leave, we lose a lot of data. By centralizing the data in Oxand Simeo™, the transfer is assured. The tool thus enables the continuity of knowledge: this is what makes the tool valuable and attractive.

We would like to thank Mr Maurice for agreeing to discuss his views with us, and we invite you to read our recent article on the decarbonisation of social housing corporations if you would like to find out more about the impact of the late regulations for the sector.

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