Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has launched a new £3.6 million programme to help the public sector cut carbon emissions and reduce energy bills by updating and improving homes.

The first initiative of its kind in the UK, the Retrofit Accelerator for Homes programme will, he said, provide much-needed support for the under-resourced public sector to retrofit homes with urgent upgrades and improvements such as better insulation, low-carbon heat and alternative power sources.

As part of the programme, local authorities and housing associations will be able to benefit from expert advice and guidance on large-scale energy efficiency projects.

Mr Khan explained that the initiative will take a new “whole-house” approach to the property to: improve the building fabric (walls, windows, floors and roofs); improve the heating system; and install renewable energy where possible (such as heat pumps and solar panels).

“We are in the midst of a climate emergency which poses a threat to our planet ,” he said, “and we can no longer delay the urgent action that is needed to address it. London’s ageing and energy-inefficient homes are responsible for around one third of the capital’s greenhouse gas emissions and urgently need to be refitted.”

Londoners will spend around £3.5 billion pounds this year powering their homes. Retrofitting helps to cut these costs and helps tackle fuel poverty.

Tackling social housing properties means that improvements can be made to whole blocks or streets of houses quickly and efficiently, driving down the cost of installation and materials.

By creating a demand in the market for whole-house retrofits of this kind, the programme aims to pass on these solutions and savings to private homeowners too.

Transformative retrofitting can also increase the value of homes; ultra-low energy homes retrofitted in Nottingham last year saw a 25% uplift in market value to £100,000 after the works.

Last reviewed 25 February 2020