Lenders and energy firms to discuss ‘realistic ways’ of greening housing stock

The UK Green Building Council (UKGBC) is to host high-level meetings between mortgage providers and energy companies on improving the performance of existing buildings.

The move is in line with Building’s 99% campaign, which calls for the greening of the legacy stock that makes up 99% of our built environment, Paul King, chief executive of the UKGBC, said offering the public realistic ways of making their homes more energy efficient was the best way to solve the incipient environmental crisis.

He said: “We need to be able to spread the upfront costs of all the kit needed to make a home more energy efficient, such as insulation or a new boiler, over a long period of time, for example through a mortgage. This way payback will be easier and, with savings in energy costs, might not be noticeable at all.”

He added: “Once we see if there are any regulatory gaps that would stop this moving forward, we can go to the government to see if it can plug these gaps.”

King said meetings would take place in the next few months.

The UKGBC’s plan came to light as parliament announced a select committee inquiry into improving the energy efficiency of residential stock.

MPs will look at the success of current measures, including energy performance certificates. They will also examine government efforts to tackle the existing private and public housing stock, as well as the cost of reducing carbon emissions.

The UKGBC is set to begin work on a code for non-residential buildings this week. It will ask the industry how BREEAM, the sustainability test for commercial buildings, could be improved.