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Making Homes More Energy Efficient in the UK

image credit: Image source: brc.org.uk
Nick Ferengi's picture
Founder and Editor CAGR Value

Nick is the editor of CAGRValue, a finance blog focused on growth investing, At CAGRValue, we explore the most exciting markets, industries and economies in terms of growth and try to pick out...

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  • Aug 16, 2022
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The UK is one of the world’s largest in terms of annual energy consumption per country, with over 300,000 Gigawatt hours (GWh) per year. 

While the country’s status as a developed economy implies a lot of the power is consumed by the industrial sector, domestic use also plays a key part given the relatively colder climate the country experiences during winter.

The UK government has taken the initiative to make it easier for homes to save power through various programs. Here we look at some of the measures homeowners can take toward becoming more energy efficient.

Capitalise on government subsidies

The government has zero-rated VAT for costs associated with the installation of energy-saving materials. Consumers that take advantage of the subsidy could save between £1000-£2000 on the cost of installing an air cost heat pump. 

The government also launched a £450 million Boiler Upgrade Scheme in April 2022, opening the door for as many applicants willing to install one to take up the opportunity. The scheme offers consumers an opportunity to apply for boiler grants, which allows consumers to replace old boilers with new ones from reputable boiler brands.

According to the scheme, those with boilers that are older than 10 years qualify for the grant-backed replacement. 

The government also launched a £1.8 million Green Home Finance Innovation Fund, which was completed in March as part of its broader strategy for supporting green finance for homeowners.

The government plans to follow up the Green Home Finance with another £10 million Green Home Finance Accelerator programme focused on providing long-term support to the development of innovative green finance products and services.

The UK is one of the leading countries for the Net Zero Strategy, which seeks to reduce carbon emissions globally.

Adhering to simple energy-saving practices

While you may easily notice that a power-consuming appliance is turned off when you are about to use it, it’s not always the case when you are done with it. That’s why people in the UK end up spending as much as £55 more by leaving appliances on standby mode, rather than switching them off at the plug.

Research has also established that fitting your home with draught-proof windows and doors, as well as, blocking cracks in floors and skirting boards can save you as much as £55 per year while turning off lights, not in use, and spending less time in the shower can save you an extra £55 annually. 

Conclusion

With the UK energy prices rising this year amid Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and the subsequent sanctions placed on Russia, it may not be too late to take up the opportunities offered by the government to reduce energy costs.

Last year, the average UK household spent £764 on electricity, based on an annual consumption of 3,600 kWh/year. That’s £64 more than the previous year, representing an increase of 7.5%. The energy-saving practices discussed here could have easily resulted in a lower average if every household took them on board.

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