The future of housing in Britain is net zero, or at least it will be by 2025 – according to the government’s Future Homes Standard released earlier this year. Its aim is for all new homes in the UK to be highly energy efficient, zero carbon ready and have low carbon heating.
The built environment currently contributes around 40 percent of the UK’s total carbon footprint, according to the UK Green Building Council, making heating buildings a priority issue if the UK is to meet its goal of net zero d ‘by 2050. Existing homes and businesses will also be subject to more stringent requirements for replacements and repairs.
Reducing carbon emissions from properties has been high on the UK’s agenda lately, in part due to the recent G7 summit in early June and the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference in the UK. United (COP26) to be held in Glasgow later this year. Yet green homes and sustainability in the housing industry are by no means new.
The UK is already home to a number of beautifully designed, eco-friendly and energy efficient properties.
Global heating company Viessmann recently highlighted a number of green homes across the UK that could provide a model for the future of UK housing, from completely off-grid property in Scotland to a detached house in Essex. Every home showcases what’s possible when homeowners are able to make a full commitment to creating a more sustainable, eco-friendly home.
That being said, many Britons wishing to invest in a green home may find the prospect of a pipe dream.
However, as mortgage brokers, Scout Financial Services explains that there are already a number of companies offering attractive financial products to prospective homeowners keen to go green.
Neil Weston, Director of Scout Financial Services, explains: “Several lenders have taken a notable step to promote the purchase and modernization of more environmentally friendly properties, and this is reflected in the offers available for properties with better EPC rating. We can see Nationwide offering a cashback of £ 500 for properties with an EPC of 92 or higher (this is in addition to any other cashback on their mortgage product). Natwest takes a similar approach, with a cash back of £ 350 (on up to 85% LTV mortgages) if you select a ‘green mortgage’ offer with a 2 year discount or a 5 year fixed rate.
“Other lenders also have similar offers with a reduced LTV, increased borrowing, or cash back incentive. These, while helping all the buyer of a newer, more efficient property, unfortunately will not cover the costs of improvements for a less efficient property on the whole to provide an incentive for the owner to make those improvements. They are certainly a good first step and show intention, but may not lead to meaningful action. “