Government Demand Age-Friendly Energy Efficient Homes

The government are launching a house building competition in order to encourage developers and builders to design elderly friendly homes for the future.

Small businesses, designers and manufacturers have been given the brief of creating ‘new low-carbon, age-friendly homes, meeting the highest standards of design.’

The government hope the designs will consider the use of innovative technology solutions to help elderly people improve their quality of life.

The government are committed to making the UK carbon net zero by 2050. Currently, UK housing stock has a long way to go with many claiming the government need to commit more resource into retrofitting and upgrading older buildings to ensure they meet efficiency standards.

Currently, around two thirds of the UK’s housing stock fail to meet long-term efficiency targets, according to government data.

Over 12 million homes are graded between D and G according to Energy Performance Certificates (EPC). With a ‘D’ grade rating placing the home slightly below average, the revelation means that too many homeowners are paying more money on their energy consumption and leads to increased levels of pollution.

Overall, homes in Northern Ireland and Wales had the lowest collective energy efficiency performance with 67 per cent of homes falling below a D rating.

England’s average stood at 62 per cent whilst 59 per cent of Scottish homes were failing long-term energy targets.

A recent group of construction experts, including Builders Merchants Federation, Federation of Master Builders and Building Alliance, recently urged the government to ensure legislation is in place to address the environmental impact of the current housing stock after finding that the current housing stock is responsible for 40 per cent of the UK’s carbon emissions.

The Home of 2030 competition will now look to produce homes which will cater for the future whilst addressing the needs of our aging population with the winning entry being offered the opportunity to collaborate with a house builder to construct the homes on a plot of land provided by Homes England.

Housing Minister Christopher Pincher MP said:

“This competition will harness all that technology has to offer to bring in a housing revolution: new low carbon homes that deliver low energy bills and independent living for older generations.

“The new gold standard of building will have the future in mind – not just in the United Kingdom, but worldwide.”

Minister for Clean Growth and Energy Kwasi Kwarteng said:

“Levelling up environmental standards in new housing across the country is essential to end our contribution to climate change.

“This government is also investing over £6 billion to improve the energy efficiency of existing homes, and during this Year of Climate Action we plan to go further to decarbonise buildings, with low carbon heating central to that.”

Minister for Care, Helen Whately said:

“We want everyone, regardless of age, to live healthier, more independent lives. I’m looking forward to seeing great ideas for homes that will meet people’s needs with older age and be somewhere you would have pleasure in living.

“Building homes with all generations in mind will help us achieve our Ageing Society Grand Challenge and its mission to make sure we can all enjoy an additional 5 extra years of healthy, independent life by 2035.”

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