My-Strong-Home combines property insurance savings with low-payment financing to make it affordable for homeowners to fortify their homes against hurricanes and other extreme weather events
The National Energy Improvement Fund, LLC (NEIF) neifund.org, a Certified B-Corp™ energy efficiency lender, has purchased the assets of My Strong Home PBC and its property and casualty insurance operation, MSH Insurance Services LLC (MyStrongHome) mystronghome.net. The acquisition expands NEIF’s mission-based and contractor-focused lending and services into resilient home improvements and property insurance. It also expands NEIF’s residential lending footprint from the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic U.S. into the Southeast and Gulf Coast states including South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Louisiana, Alabama and Louisiana, with Texas licensing pending. NEIF also offers commercial energy financing nationally through partnerships with distributors and utilities.
MyStrongHome was founded in 2015 by Margot Brandenburg, a recognized expert in impact investing, and Eleanor Kitzman, former Insurance Commissioner for South Carolina and Texas. The company was created to leverage the insurance premium savings that coastal state homeowners receive when they replace their existing roof with a storm-resilient roof installed to the FORTIFIED standard by a qualified contractor. FORTIFIED installation standards are intended to strengthen homes and buildings against natural hazards such as high winds and hurricanes. The standards were established by the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS). The resulting insurance premium savings can be used to offset the monthly payments for fixed rate, longer term resilience improvement loans such as those offered by the National Energy Improvement Fund. The MyStrongHome platform integrates the insurance savings and financing to make the process seamless for consumers and contractors.
“We created MyStrongHome to make it more affordable for homeowners of all income levels to upgrade roofing and other improvements that make their homes stronger and more resilient to hurricanes and other weather events,” said MyStrongHome founder Margot Brandenburg. “We found a great financing partner in the National Energy Improvement Fund. As a Certified B-Corporation® they share our values and mission, and as an innovator in energy efficiency finance they are on the cutting-edge in delivery of simple, transparent and fair financing programs to contractors and consumers.”
With a lending legacy from 1947, the National Energy Improvement Fund was organized in 2017 as a for-profit Benefit Corporation, operating as a full-service, multi-state licensed consumer and commercial lender. It has funded nearly 5,000 energy and resilience improvements like HVAC, roofing, lighting and battery storage for homes and businesses delivered through a network of over 700 qualified contractors. Led by energy financing pioneers Peter Krajsa and Matthew Brown and a team responsible for over $800 million in energy financing programs, it received its certification as a B Corporation® in 2018 and was named a U.S. Department of Energy Home Improvement Expert™ Partner in 2019.
“The integration of the MyStrongHome platform, with its focus on resilient improvements, is a natural extension of NEIF’s work in energy efficiency,” said Peter Krajsa, NEIF’s Co-Chair and Founder. “The acquisition helps escalate our model of providing financing and related services to consumers and business for upgrades that make their properties stronger, healthier and more efficient and to help contractors grow their businesses.”
NEIF, based in Allentown, PA and Denver, CO will add a business development office in Port St. Lucie, FL and a multi-state property and casualty insurance agency in Charleston, SC. Margot Brandenburg, now a Senior Program Advisor for Mission Investments with the Ford Foundation, will continue to be involved with MyStrongHome and NEIF as a Senior Advisor.
Source: Company Press Release