Green improvements to homes could take decades

Unless green improvements to homes increase, it could take 43 years for all properties currently for sale to reach an energy efficiency rating of C or above. For property to rent it could take 31 years for homes to reach that rating.

Research carried out by Rightmove found more help as well as significant incentives are needed for both landlords and homeowners to improve energy efficiency and bring down running costs.

It comes after levelling up secretary Michael Gove MP said landlords could be offered more time to upgrade their properties to comply with proposed new Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) ratings.

According to Rightmove’s research, one in five (19%) first-time buyers say energy efficiency is a major factor when looking to purchase. More than three quarters of home owners (78%) say reducing energy bills would motivate them to make changes.

However, two in five landlords with one property say they’re more likely to sell up than make improvements.

Currently, energy-saving improvements are expensive. For homeowners, there are not only the cost barriers to retrofitting, but also the challenge of working out which changes will have the biggest impact, and how to get started.

Rightmove’s data shows 60% of homes for sale on the portal – and 50% of homes available to rent – have an EPC rating of D or below.

Introducing stamp duty rebates for new buyers who make green improvements, more green mortgage deals as well as grants, enabling new innovations that speed up the creation and implementation of energy efficient technology and tax benefits for green technology such as solar panels and electric car charging points could all boost energy efficiency improvements.

Sheldon Bosley Knight’s associate director Nik Kyriacou said: “Retrofitting homes, especially older properties, can be very expensive and on top of the cost of living crisis, it’s not necessarily at the top of home owners’ list of priorities.

“However, we can all see the benefits of increasing the energy efficiency of properties, not least the obvious reduction in bills, so if there can be incentives to help people make the necessary changes it would speed the process up.

“As ever if you would like to get help and advice on this please get in touch as our lettings and sales agents will be happy to help.”