31 January 2023

How green technology could reduce energy bills

By MT Finance

A topic that dominated the headlines for much of 2023 – and continues to be at the top of the news agenda – was the cost of living crisis and how it has been further exacerbated by spiralling energy bills While recent analysis from Investec predicts that the cap on annual energy  bills will fall to £2,478 for an average bill this summer, down from its previous estimate of £2,640 earlier in January. While this will be a relief for many, it is still an increase from 2021’s annual bill which, as the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy noted, averaged at £575 for gas and £764 for electricity.

A long-term solution

One way to help mitigate these rises is by using alternative energy sources. In fact, a study published by World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and ScottishPower back in July 2022 showed that up to £1,878 could be saved a year by installing green technologies such as solar panels, heat pumps and more effective insulation.

Each item has different benefits. While some – including solar panels – allow residents to generate a portion of their own energy thereby reducing their reliance on both fossil fuels and the grid, others repurpose or better conserve existing heat – with heat pumps doing the former and insulation achieving the latter.

These kind of technologies do not come cheap though. Costs vary from about £1,000 for an electric vehicle charging point and rise to between £7,000 and £13,000 for heat pumps. Solar panels will need around £5,000 and £11,000 to be spent on them, although that is dependent on the size of the surface area and the type of panel system. These prices may seem high – and subsequently unaffordable for many, particularly at the moment – but there is government assistance available.

Applications to the Green Homes Grant – which issued vouchers allowing recipients to make their properties more energy efficient – may have closed, but like its predecessor, the Boiler Upgrade System which launched in May 2022 also helps those looking to update homes with low carbon heating technologies. Between £5,000 and £6,000 is available via grants to go towards the cost and installation of an air source heat pump, a ground source heat pump or a biomass boiler. One grant is allowed per property.

As well as what can be saved on energy bills, it’s also worth considering the impact green technologies can have on a property’s value. WWF and ScottishPower’s study reported that it could be boosted by an average of £10,000. For those looking at the long-term benefits, this is sure to act as another incentive.

Dedicated to change

And this is something MT Finance is also committed to helping with. Back in June 2021, we announced a new initiative where we give £250 credit to all our borrowers who achieve an energy performance rating of A or B at any time during the term of their loan. Designed to encourage borrowers to make properties more energy efficient, this can act as incentive on a number of levels. Not only can it translate into lower bills, but it’s also good news for the environment thanks to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

More details regarding our environmental, social and governance policy (ESG) can be found here.

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