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General Election 2019: Home Renovation commitments

06 Dec 2019

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Another General Election is just days away, and politicians are doing what they can to convince you that they’re worthy of getting the keys to Number Ten on the 13th.

In the run up to the 2017 election Energist filtered out the headline grabbing claims from each of the party manifestos and just looked at the political promises for sustainable house building.

And here we are again just two years later…

 

Home renovation commitments

What pledges can we expect on home renovations and upgrades?

As you may expect, the Greens are pushing home renovation as one of their main policies. They’re committing to installing better insulation in every home that needs it, upgrading the heating in a million homes, fitting solar panels to another million and pushing a rollout of battery storage and car charging sockets.

The bigger promise is that every one of these renovated homes will need to achieve an A rated EPC. Within ten years they want every renovated, every new and every rented house in the UK to have an A rated EPC. To give that some context currently less than 1% of newly built homes reach an A.

Greens are the only party to commit to a specific EPC rating for existing homes, and the only ones to quote the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard legislation (which currently requires old buildings to be renovated to at least an E on the EPC certificate.

Liberal Democrats are making similar promises – they want to insulate every home in Britain by 2030 and want to bring 3.5 million households out of fuel poverty by 2025.

They are also offering free retrofits and home improvements for low income households and will promote heat pumps as an alternative to ageing boiler systems.

The Lib Dems are also promising a ten-year programme to reduce the energy consumption from our buildings to lower fuel bills and reduce emissions, and are putting £5 billion aside to fund zero carbon projects.

The Labour Party have somehow managed to be both incredibly vague and extremely detailed in the space of a couple of sentences.

The vague part is they want to upgrade almost all homes in the UK to meet the highest energy efficiency standards. (Without defining what is meant by ‘almost’ or ‘highest’)

The detail comes straight after when they claim these upgrades will reduce the average annual household bill by £417 by 2030.

Prior to the election being announced the Conservatives had already set out proposals to reduce fuel bills and cut energy use in new builds and had promised a follow-up report to cover renovation projects early in the New Year.

Their manifesto commits £9.2 billion to improve the energy efficiency of our homes, schools and hospitals.

The Brexit Party has not included home renovation projects in it’s Contract With The People, but does confirm we’ll all benefit from lower energy bills once we’ve left the EU.

Back to the Greens: they want all renovated walls, roofs and windows improved so ‘the energy performance of that part of the building’ meets the equivalent to an A rating on the EPC. This suggests they’re either changing EPCs to show an itemised list of elements, or they’re not completely clued up on how EPCs are currently calculated.

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