What motivates Brits to improve their homes?

Research shows what consumers will prioritise in the face of the cost-of-living crisis

What motivates Brits to improve their homes?

New research from Mortgage Advice Bureau has found that around one in six, or 17%, of Brits would like to make home improvements to boost the EPC rating on their property, while 26% would like to make home improvements to make their home more energy efficient.

With the Government’s ambitious Net Zero targets in place, which involves decarbonising homes, many people are becoming more conscious of their energy efficiency ratings, as the survey of 2,078 consumer respondents shows.

The government has set a target to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, meaning the country needs to completely decarbonise housing stock in the next 30 years.

To achieve this, UK homes will need to shift away from using gas and oil boilers to produce heat, and primarily rely on electric systems like heat pumps. It will also involve upgrading homes to make them more energy efficient.

That is probably why 18% of Brits said they will prioritise improvements that will make their home more energy efficient, while 8% said they will prioritise specific home improvements because they are worried about their EPC rating.

Read more: UK housing and net zero – why Britain is in a tough spot.

However, not all home improvements are motivated by energy efficiency. Some 21% intend to make home improvements to increase the value of their property, 23% said it was to cut household bills, while 13% said it would be to increase the saleability of their property. Around 44% said that they would like to make improvements to create a better living environment.

When asked what improvements they would like or intend to make to their property, 16% said they would install double or triple glazed windows, 14% said they would invest on energy efficient fittings.

The cost-of-living crisis, however, seems to be limiting many from making their intended home improvements, with 21% saying they cannot afford to make home improvements, while 28% said they will compromise on which improvements they make and focus on smaller jobs until they can afford more expensive ones.

Read more: Homeowners put off by cost of green renovation.

“Ambitious plans from the government to reach net zero is motivating many to think about their carbon footprint and how they can make their homes more energy efficient,” Ben Thompson, deputy chief executive at Mortgage Advice Bureau, commented.

“This is hugely encouraging, particularly when we consider that buildings are responsible for around 17% of the UK’s national emissions. Of course, much work is still to be done to help make housing stock more eco-friendly, but even little steps made by individuals, such as changing a light bulb, can start to make a big difference.

“While these bold goals are in place, they will only be met if we have synergy from all parties, including lenders, brokers, trade bodies, Government, and consumers.”