UK homeowners are becoming more eco-conscious, research finds

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A survey revealed that 60% of homeowners are planning to invest in solar panels. It also found that 26% have already considered a heat pump, with 39% saying they are familiar with heat pump technology.

The poll, commissioned by City Plumbing and conducted by Censuswide, asked 2,011 homeowners across the UK how eco-conscious they were and what it would take for them to consider having renewables installed.

More than 1.3m homes have solar panel installations, according to the latest MCS data, meaning 4.1% of the 29m homes in the UK are currently generating electricity from solar panels. Of these properties, 35.1% were detached, 31.1% semi-detached, 20.1% terraced and the remaining 14% flats, apartments and other domestic dwellings, demonstrating the flexibility and wide appeal of the solution.

The survey revealed that on average, people expect to install solar panels within the next 5 years and 5 months. A total of 71% of homeowners are concerned about the environmental impact of traditional energy sources, only 8% said they were unconcerned.

It further revealed that 64% of people say self-sufficiency is important to them when it comes to energy storage in their home, with 19% saying it is really important. That figure rose to 80% of those aged 18-24 and 71% of those aged 25-34. A vast majority, 75%, believe solar panels are a reliable source of energy.

Hemal Morjaria, managing director of energy efficiency at City Plumbing, said: “These statistics really do underline the market potential for solar PV and heat pumps in the UK and the opportunity ahead for installers who transition their business to new technologies.

“The opportunity to reduce energy bills remains a big driver for consumers and that’s something heat pumps and solar PV can help tackle when combined with battery storage.

“This is a good time for installers, engineers and electricians to take up training in how to install renewables, which is why we’ve partnered with GTEC training to help them on their journey via our Energy Efficiency Centre.”

Hemal added: “Government support in providing subsidies to make renewables more affordable is part of the answer, but installers can play a big part in helping homeowners understand better the benefits too.

“What’s most encouraging from this survey is the sheer size of the potential market if together we can get it right. The public is showing interest in both Solar PV and heat pumps and their knowledge is growing. All of us in the industry, including installers, can help to build that knowledge.”

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