Retrofitting your home can help to lower your energy bills and make your home warmer, here’s what you need to know
Retrofitting helps to improve a property’s energy efficiency through the addition of new technology or features, and it can help to save you money on your long-term energy bills.
There are different ways to retrofit a house, varying from single-room improvements to whole house retrofits, but each process is ultimately designed to increase your energy efficiency. This focus on efficiency is why retrofitting differs from renovating a house or making home improvements designed to make a home more aesthetic.
Several industry groups believe retrofitting the UK’s housing stock is essential, especially if the UK is to reach net zero by 2050, which is why many industry groups are campaigning for a National Retrofit Strategy to be introduced to help provide a roadmap. This guide will explain why there is a growing push for homeowners to retrofit their homes, how this can be achieved, and why making energy-efficient improvements can benefit your home.
There’s no official definition of retrofitting, it is more than just renovating a building and involves more substantial changes to the original building into something much more energy efficient.”
Retrofitting typically involves a significant improvement in the thermal performance and comfort of your home, and by improving the fabric of the building.
Retrofitting is multi-faceted and can include insulating roofs, walls and floors; replacement windows; improved ventilation design; airtightness works and more efficient heating and hot water systems, such has heat pumps. Renewables are also often installed during retrofit works.”
Britain’s 28 million existing homes are responsible for around 15% of the UK’s carbon emissions, according to the Committee for Climate Change. This is a major obstacle to hitting the government’s net zero climate goals.
“To reduce the UK’s carbon emissions, energy-efficient retrofits will need to be undertaken on the UK’s existing buildings at scale. Many industry groups, such as the Federation of Master Builders (FMB), have advocated for a National Retrofit Strategy to be published which would set out a roadmap to help retrofit our homes, and could provide financial support to homeowners. The government alluded to such a strategy when it published its Energy White Paper last year, but this has not yet been developed.
There needs to be a national strategy in place. We can then start to develop the retrofit industry in the appropriate way. At the moment the amount of work that has to happen, to increase the skill base, the knowledge base and the people working in that area – is not enough, so a huge scaling up process is required.
Retrofitting the UK’s leakiest homes to low-carbon standards would cost the government £5bn within the next four years, according to the Construction Leadership Council (CLC), which says any strategy should include government grants for low-income households.
Information on government schemes funding the installation of energy efficiency measures and low-carbon heating systems in domestic properties.