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Brokers play crucial role in energy efficiency evolution – Dijkstra

by: Esther Dijkstra, managing director, intermediaries at Lloyds Banking Group
  • 05/01/2024
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Brokers play crucial role in energy efficiency evolution – Dijkstra
Improving the energy efficiency of the UK’s homes is an issue that needs to be addressed urgently — and the statistics speak for themselves.

The energy efficiency of UK homes is seriously lagging. Not only are we home to the oldest houses in the world, but we also have the least insulated properties across Europe – with our homes accounting for 16 per cent of the nation’s CO2 emissions and 35 per cent of our total energy use.  

It’s clear that if we’re to meet the government’s targets of net zero by 2050, we must improve the quality of our housing at pace. This drive toward greening our homes will require immediate, collaborative action from us all.  

Brokers are in an increasingly important position, with UK homeowners more likely than ever to ask questions about the importance of energy efficiency during the mortgage advice process. 


Communicating the benefits of energy efficiency

Making our properties more energy efficient has numerous benefits. From keeping homeowners warmer in the winter to reducing their carbon footprint. On top of helping to keep energy bills down, Rightmove’s 2023 Greener Homes Report also found that improving a home’s EPC rating from an F to a C could add over £55,000 to a property’s value. 

Despite this, homeowners are often hesitant when it comes to undertaking retrofitting measures. According to our recent insights, 22 per cent of homeowners are not convinced that their investment will be reflected in the resale value of their property, while 30 per cent are concerned it won’t reduce their bills enough to warrant the investment. 

Brokers are in a unique position to help homeowners overcome these worries and understand the barriers of retrofitting. And this is something that homeowners would welcome, with 30 per cent stating that clear information on costs and benefits would encourage them to make their home more energy efficient. 

Similarly, for those that remain concerned by the cost of retrofitting – 49 per cent of homeowners cited this as the biggest barrier to making energy improvements – brokers have the opportunity to discuss important financing options. 

For instance, there are a range of government support schemes available to help with the cost of energy efficiency improvements. However, 36 per cent of homeowners aren’t aware of the support available. Therefore, being able to point homeowners to support, such as the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, could go a long way in helping them to green their homes. 


Bridging the gap  

Even if homeowners are aware of the benefits and support available, according to our insights, a large proportion may not know where to find information about improving the energy efficiency of their property (34 per cent).  

While brokers may not have the answer to every question, they can play an integral role in bridging the awareness gap. By having regular touchpoints with homeowners, brokers can direct their clients to credible resources and independent bodies, such as the Energy Saving Trust and Octopus Energy. 

These organisations have a range of valuable resources, from energy tools that help to track usage at home to step-by-step guidance on how to make homes more eco-friendly.  


Transforming our homes 

The positive impacts of greener homes truly underscore the important role that, now more than ever, brokers have to play.  

By helping homeowners understand the options and support available, brokers can steer people towards the environmental and financial benefits of making more energy-efficient choices. 

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