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Talking about insulation and such measures

(28 Posts)
GillT57 Sun 10-Oct-21 13:57:51

There has obviously been much discussion in the press, on TV etc., about the looming energy price increases and what we can all do to save energy and stay warm. But, all the pundits I have seen are talking about steps such as replacing double glazing, installing thermostatic timers, putting up heavy lined curtains, additional loft insulation etc. All well and good if you can afford the capital outlay and if you are an owner occupier! I would imagine that a lot of those families which will struggle the most are living in rented accomodation, so what are they supposed to do? Should their landlords be undertaking these improvements by law in view of the forthcoming climate discussions?

Nannarose Sun 10-Oct-21 14:27:24

Absolutely! The simple basics would save a lot of energy, and help folk to be less worried about the cost of energy and be more comfortable.
Insulating all properties to a high standard would create jobs as well. IMHO a scheme should be set up to enable this for those on low incomes / UC, and help with some capital + interest-free loans for others.
It astonishes me that this has not been done!
Some years ago I saw social housing that had these measures + micro-generation, but recently these have not been mandatory. Why?

Aveline Sun 10-Oct-21 14:41:48

I was always brought up to be conscious of a need to save energy. Lights and fires switched off if room empty etc. I tried to din this in to my children. However, DD and SiL drove me mad with their wasteful ways. I had to smile secretly last week when I heard 8year old DGS giving his mum a row for leaving lights on unnecessarily.

GillT57 Sun 10-Oct-21 15:16:22

with all due respect Aveline , we are not talking about the simple measures we all could and should take, what I am concerned about is tenants who are obviously unable to install better windows, loft insulation, even put up curtain poles for heaver curtains. I think there should be a mandatory energy efficiency level certificate before a property can be let, after all, as tax payers, we may be contributing to the housing benefits going to landlords, surely it is not unreasonable for said housing to be of an acceptable standard?

Katie59 Sun 10-Oct-21 15:37:05

www.gov.uk/guidance/apply-for-the-green-homes-grant-scheme

There are a lot of grants for improving insulation but in older properties it’s a major job that involves dry lining and new double glazing. Only really practical when doing a full refurbishment.

Callistemon Sun 10-Oct-21 15:38:18

It astonishes me that this has not been done!

There have been Government schemes to install loft and cavity wall insulation free of charge.

I am concerned about cavity wall insulation as in some cases can cause damp and consequently mould in properties.
The cavity is there for a purpose, to ensure that damp does not penetrate to the inside of the property.

Jaxjacky Sun 10-Oct-21 15:55:58

Katie59 this scheme has now finished.
www.greensquare.co.uk/blog/goodbye-green-homes-grant-what-now

GillT57 Sun 10-Oct-21 16:07:47

Yes, but all of these schemes are dependant upon having a responsible landlord who will organise the installation of said insulation and such. Not much good for tenants.

Alegrias1 Sun 10-Oct-21 16:09:55

I'm really, really trying not to mention Insulate Britain...

M0nica Sun 10-Oct-21 16:18:55

I think there should be a large government scheme to improve the insulation of houses. Something like the great scheme that converted the country to natural gas in the 1960s.

There should be free government loans to home owners (including landlords) repayable either in installments or as a registered charge on the house to be repaid when it is sold.

Such a scheme would be a lot more complicated than the conversion to natural gas as the large age range, construction methods etc of houses will make such a scheme complicated. We would also have to make sure that no materials or methods are used that could later be found to be a fire risk. We want no more Grenfell Towers.

But we could start with all houses and flats built since 1970 and gradually work back.

PollyTickle Sun 10-Oct-21 16:19:29

I do agree, landlords should be responsible for properly and safely insulating rental properties. They should then be inspected and issued a certificate before being allowed to rent out.
I also agree that grants should be made available to qualifying landlords and to private property owners until all U.K. property reaches an acceptable standard. The money that could be saved in the long term would be worth the investment, savings would include NHS resources and less absenteeism throughout industry as a result of better living conditions.

midgey Sun 10-Oct-21 16:29:36

Even some of the Insulate Britain bods haven’t yet insulated their houses!

Nandalot Sun 10-Oct-21 16:38:33

All new builds should have solar panels. Simple.

MaizieD Sun 10-Oct-21 16:45:33

M0nica

I think there should be a large government scheme to improve the insulation of houses. Something like the great scheme that converted the country to natural gas in the 1960s.

There should be free government loans to home owners (including landlords) repayable either in installments or as a registered charge on the house to be repaid when it is sold.

Such a scheme would be a lot more complicated than the conversion to natural gas as the large age range, construction methods etc of houses will make such a scheme complicated. We would also have to make sure that no materials or methods are used that could later be found to be a fire risk. We want no more Grenfell Towers.

But we could start with all houses and flats built since 1970 and gradually work back.

Wasn't that in Starmer's speech to the Labour conference? Green measures including the retro-fitting of insulation to old er properties? A good move if enough is invested in it; creating jobs

From his speech:

So it will be Labour’s national mission over the next decade, to fit out every home that needs it, to make sure it is warm, well-insulated and costs less to heat and we will create thousands of jobs in the process

I realise that Labour is in no position to do this. But I can't see the current government paying any more than lip service..

Peasblossom Sun 10-Oct-21 17:46:05

Um, there is a a legal requirement for landlords. I found that out when I moved in with OH and let my little house.
I’ll look it up.
You could be beating the wrong drum there. 🙂

Peasblossom Sun 10-Oct-21 17:57:23

Yes I had to provide an energy certificate for prospective tenants and the rating had to be C or above.

I had to put new insulation in the loft and change some of the light bulbs. Thankfully I’d had double glazing when I moved in and the boiler as fairly new or I would have had to change that too.

Landlords have to meet higher standards than a lot of householders😬

Esspee Sun 10-Oct-21 18:05:48

As a landlord I would be happy to upgrade a property but I would of course need to put up the rent to recoup the money spent. I’m guessing that is not what you had in mind OP.

For some reason landlords are looked on as the enemy by some. If I buy a property for say £250k then lend it to you I expect a return as you are borrowing something which belongs to me. When it comes to, say, car rental you never hear mutterings about exploitation. Landlords have to comply with very strict regulations and it is in their interests to ensure tenants are happy.

GillT57 Sun 10-Oct-21 18:08:52

Peasblossom

Um, there is a a legal requirement for landlords. I found that out when I moved in with OH and let my little house.
I’ll look it up.
You could be beating the wrong drum there. 🙂

No I am not. There is a safety requirement that all electrical and gas appliances are safe but no requirement, as far as I am aware, to minimise heat loss by installing the measures I discussed earlier such as double glazing and loft insulation

GillT57 Sun 10-Oct-21 18:15:35

I know that houses below a certain rating (E?) are technically not permitted to be let. But my point was that all thr energy saving advice being given to help address the looming crisis is aimed at owner occupiers and is of little use to tenants, the very people who may be the most exposed to the dramatic heating cost increases

MaizieD Sun 10-Oct-21 18:19:17

For some reason landlords are looked on as the enemy by some. If I buy a property for say £250k then lend it to you I expect a return as you are borrowing something which belongs to me

Interesting spin there, Esspee.

I'd say that you bought the house for the purpose of making a profit from it, you are selling a service and that service should be fit for purpose.

MamaCaz Sun 10-Oct-21 18:19:52

I agree that energy-saving measures need to be taken for the sake of our climate, but I can understand people's reluctance to undertake some of them, them, whether they are landlords or owner-occupiers,because the financial costs often don't add up.

We are extremely lucky - we live in social rented housing, and the Housing Association has in the last ten years implemented several improvements that have benefited us:

- An air-source heat system (combined with a long overdue installation of half-decent insulation that they had wrongly insisted, for over ten years, was already in place) was fitted twelve years ago.

This significantly reduced our energy bills, but we know how much it cost to install. That, plus the annual services and now, repair bills on a system that is reaching the end of its life, mean that the costs to our landlord are far higher than the initial capital outlay, and far exceed the savings to us, the tenants. .

- New double glazed windows were fitted three or four years ago. They are no better than the old ones, and so badly fitted that if we complain, they might need to be replaced, at yet more cost to our landlord.

One of our sons bought a new-build house eight years ago which has a solar panel that heats their water.
As a result, their energy bills have been low, but the annual services and multiple repairs of the system have far outweighed those savings on their energy bills.

I genuinely don't know what the answer is, but it's understandable that people are reluctant to make 'improvements' that keep on costing them way beyond the initial outlay.

varian Sun 10-Oct-21 18:24:35

The UK has the oldest and poorest insulated housing stock in the developed world. Upgrading existing homes should have been a government priority for the last twenty years or more.

If this were to be given priority it could create employment opportunities for those with the right skills but do we have these skilled people? If not why not?

SueDonim Sun 10-Oct-21 18:25:20

I have a tiny one bed flat which I bought for my student DD’s. I put in new double glazing, thick carpets and it had a new boiler anyway. I don’t own the attic, though, so can’t put loft insulation in. It’s part of a granite building that’s 120+ years old and they’re v difficult to retrofit with other measures. I don’t think removing properties from the rental market would be a good idea, as there aren’t enough homes as it is.

I’m surprised, really, that some landlords can get away with offering generally substandard properties. I’ve had to jump through hoops to make mine ready for rental - how people evade the regulations beats me. confused Not that I want to evade them - I want my tenant to feel at home and comfortable because I like to think they’ll treat it will the same respect I treat them.

GillT57 Sun 10-Oct-21 18:31:40

I agree with what you posted pollytickle the overall savings in energy, the improvement in people's living conditions, the creation of skilled jobs and the increased potential for achieving the reduction of burning of carbon fuels has to be welcomed.

Peasblossom Sun 10-Oct-21 18:38:46

pollytickle my property did have to be inspected and given a certificate. It is a legal requirement.

*GillT57 is right though, it is a rating of E. The C rating is due to come in in 2025.

I was ahead of the game. Like I’ve said on other threads I’m belt and braces😬