Households will be rewarded with cheaper mortgage rates by improving their home’s energy efficiency, under a new green finance initiative set to be unveiled today. Ahead of the launch of the Green Finance Strategy, the UK Government has announced a £5 million fund to help the financial sector develop environment-oriented home finance products. So-called ‘green mortgages’ would give customers discounted mortgage rates once they have upgraded the energy rating of their home. Currently there are around 17 million homes in the UK with Energy Performance Certificate ratings in the least efficient categories, D to G. Companies will also be offered the chance to win a share of a Â£10m if they can come up with innovative ways to reduce the cost of retrofitting the UK’s old housing stock to improve energy efficiency. This could include assembling parts of buildings like pre-fabricated roofs or facades off-site and quickly fitting them to homes, minimising disruption for homeowners. Currently homes are responsible for 15 per cent of the UK’s carbon emissions. Energy and Clean Growth Minister Chris Skidmore said: “To fulfil our world-leading commitment to reach net zero emissions by 2050, we need an overhaul of our housing stock to tackle the disproportionate amount of carbon emissions from buildings. By rolling out more green mortgages and reducing the costs of retrofitting older homes we’re encouraging homeowners to improve the efficiency of their homes and save money on their energy bills, helping to ensure everyone has access to a warm and comfortable home.” As part of the Green Finance Strategy, funding from the Green Home Finance Innovation Fund (GHFIF) will be awarded to projects that incentivise homeowners to improve the energy efficiency of their properties – for example, by improving cavity wall insulation.
Herald 1st July 2019 read more »