New research published by Lloyds Banking Group during Energy Saving Week has revealed the lack of confidence and skills gaps Brits face when attempting to make their home Net-Zero ready.

A key barrier preventing homeowners from taking action is that they don’t believe they have the knowledge to make energy efficiency improvements to their homes. That snags Brits before we begin, despite 50% of us agreeing it is important homes are made ready by 2035 for Net Zero.

When asked, only 30% of homeowners say we are confident we knew what to do to meet that deadline.  A tad over a quarter, 27% of us, agree we wouldn’t be able to identify the improvements our home need to be greener.

Energy usage & bills unsurprisingly remain a key concern for homeowners.  However, only a third have taken action to improve their property’s energy efficiency in the last five years.

Among people who have undertaken these improvements, satisfaction with the results is logged at 96%, nearly universal. Almost two thirds, 64%, said the running costs of their home are lower after making the changes. 81% said they would recommend this type of work to a friend, family member or work colleague.

However, when asked what support might have been useful before starting their retrofit journey, over a fifth (21%) said they’d have welcomed advice and support on how to go about the process.

Along with greater support and guidance on energy efficiency measures, access to skills is also a key factor, the study finds. 24% of us state we expect direction towards skilled tradespeople to help bring properties towards on track for the government’s paramount green goal.

Two industry-level studies in 2023 documented shortages in green skills, including a shortfall of 200,000 retro-fit installers and 100,000 heat-pump technicians.   Such absences will, the Lloyds researchers indicate, soon increasingly impede the UK’s journey to net-zero homes.

Addressing the problem, Lloyds has partnered with Regeneration Brainery, a not-for-profit academy training for young people. Match-made mentoring, work experience placements, career talks, bootcamps and taster sessions are the organisation’s offering, now reaching 6,000 young people.

Andrew Asaam, Homes Director, Lloyds Banking Group said:  “The UK is home to some of the oldest housing stock the world. This means many of our homes are poorly insulated, and people are having to use huge amounts of energy to warm them – resulting in high energy bills and large carbon emissions.

“Improving the energy efficiency of our homes is a crucial step in individually and collectively reducing our energy consumption, but homeowners just don’t know where to begin and the lack of available skills to deliver the upgrades is an increasing concern.

“If UK homeowners are to get retro-fit in 2024, we must see more collective action from industry, government and financial institutions to support them in this vital transition. That’s why we launched our Making Homes Greener initiative, a journey that will see us trial new tools and collaborations, such as our work with Regeneration Brainery, to improve the energy efficiency of Britain’s homes.”


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