Category: energy efficiency

Better mortgages could be offered to energy efficient homebuyers

Homebuyers across the EU could be offered better borrowing rates on mortgages in return for purchasing more energy efficient homes or committing to implement energy saving work within properties as part of a “ground-breaking” new project.

The European Energy Efficiency Mortgage initiative is aiming to create a standardised “energy efficient mortgage” based on preferential interest rates for energy efficient homes or additional funds for retrofitting homes at the time of purchase.

The scheme has been cited as the first ever collaboration between groups of major banks, mortgage lenders, businesses and organisations from the building and energy industries for the purpose of addressing the concept of energy efficient mortgages, with the project having been launched by a consortium led by the European Mortgage Federation (EMF) and the European Covered Bond Council (ECBC).

The World Green Building Council (WorldGBC) claims that creating a private bank financing mechanism to encourage improvements in the energy efficiency of households is a key means of helping the EU to meet its energy saving target of 20 per cent by 2020 and to deliver on the ambition of the Paris Agreement reached at COP21 last December.

Read the full article in Energyzine

Comment: This seems a great idea, which could be adopted in the UK. Perhaps it could be incorporated into the Bonfield Review or be one of the announcements by the new Department for
Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy – when it finally decides what it will do to improve home energy efficiency in the home – thus revitalising a new version of the Green Deal initiative.

This is a great “carrot” for those selling and buying at house. And finally, will make the EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) rating worth something that can be promoted by Estate Agencies,

SellingUp/Populus survey – reveals that poor energy efficiency ratings does reduce price of UK house sales

A SellingUp/Populus survey done in October 2015 has revealed that poor energy efficiency ratings is property deal breaker that could ruin a sale.

EPC image

contract break

the survey suggests property buyers are a greener bunch than realised – or perhaps it is simply the fear of rising energy bills. Whatever the reason, more than one in three (36%) said a poor energy efficiency score would lead them to cut off thousands of pounds from their offer price. A further 23% would reduce their offer by a few hundred pounds and 16% would pull the plug on a purchase entirely.


Read the full article.

£4000 Energy-saving grant for Cambridgeshire homes

A £4000 grant is still available for home-owners of Cambridgeshire homes who require solid-wall insulation (SWI). But, you need to be quick as you will need to get an assessment and sign-up for SWI before 31 March 2016 with installations to be completed by 31 July 2016.

More information on solid wall insulation

There is also a grant for Private Landlords of £4000 for solid wall insulation. In both cases at 25% contribution is required by the owners. Private Landlords will also be able to get an additional £1000 for other approved measures. The funding comes from the Cambridgeshire Green Deal Communities Fund – that originally came from the National government’s Department for Energy and Climate Fund.

When its gone – it’s gone!! 

It’s very unlikely that home-owners will get any more grants like this in the next few years. The current government appears to be moving away from subsidies. So home owners need to move fast.

Over 1000 Cambridgeshire homes have received a grant for solid wall insulation.

Sign up for an Assessment Now

Draughts in homes – a big hidden issue

Some interesting research has been done by Sustainable Homes on draughts in homes. It focuses on the effects that draughts have on the perception of wintertime comfort.

Cold draughts can have detrimental effects on health and can be fatal for elderly occupants. Building regulations require that new homes are built to demanding insulation requirements using the Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP), and pressure-tested to demonstrate air-tightness – but even so, some new homes are still considered draughty by their occupants.

Full details

Four bedroom detached house costs just £15 a year to run

An article in the Daily Mail online explains how architect  Colin Usher designed the house in West Kirby to keep the bills as low as possible for himself and his wife. They pay less than the price of an average takeaway for a year’s supply of energy for heating and lighting. Usher, an architect for 35 years, won an award for the house at the 2015 Buildings And Energy Efficiency Awards for his passivhaus design.

Features to keep energy bills low. source: Daily Mail

Read the full Daily Mail article.