With energy costs skyrocketing and the UK falling short of its climate change targets for 2050, there has never been a better time to renovate. To encourage homeowners to upgrade and think green, the Government, energy providers and several other organisations now offer financial incentives for energy efficient improvements. As a result, more households are upgrading and improving their homes than ever before.
Many of these green renovations include simple steps like insulating their homes with eco-friendly materials or sealing drafts. What have you included in this year’s renovation plans? If you’re not sure, here are three of the latest trends in the UK you may want to consider:
Electric Underfloor Heating Systems
If your home’s existing home heating system and flooring aren’t at their best, an electric underfloor heating system may be the perfect solution. Because they’re hidden under the floor, these systems heat your home from the bottom to the top without forcing you to work around big, ugly radiators. Electric underfloor heating system are also relatively affordable to purchase, which means there will be more money in your budget for items such as materials and paint.
Wet underfloor heat systems are another alternative. Ideal for homes with a boiler system already in place or new construction projects, these systems push heated water through tubing located under your home’s floors. It costs up to 40% less than electric underfloor heating systems to operate and still eliminates the maintenance costs and wasted space that comes with radiator systems.
Supplemental Heating and Power Systems
In addition to improving the energy efficiency of their existing heat and power systems, homeowners are also installing alternative heat sources. This helps reduce some of the strain on the existing system while providing homes with a backup solution in case something goes wrong. For example, many homeowners who currently have a gas heating system also install a wood stove. This way, they don’t have to worry about how to heat their homes if something happens to the gas supply. And in the meantime, they can enjoy the added comfort and reduce gas costs.
Solar panels have also been increasing in popularity. They are the perfect alternative during power outages and are completely self regulated. If you live in an area where you can sell the excess power back to your provider, they can be a profitable investment. And you’ll be glad to know solar panels now cost up to 90% less than they did even a decade ago. If you also need to replace the roof materials, consider solar roof tiles instead of traditional panel systems.
The idea of a living roof has been around for centuries. They aren’t used as often as they used to be, but green roofs are becoming increasingly popular particularly in urban areas where space is in short supply. The latest in technological advancements have driven much of this increase in popularity. Some advancements have addressed common issues such as pests and root rot. And because of this, living roofs last longer and are easier to care for than ever before.
New studies related to drainage and improved membranes have made green roofs a better option today than they were decades ago. In addition to providing your home with natural insulation and relief from the elements, living roofs now weigh less, reduce noise and protect your home by making use of protective membranes. You can also turn your home’s roof into useable space by using a variety of plants including flowering and food-bearing varieties. This is perfect for urban dwellers who would love to grow their own vegetables, but don’t have the space. It also makes it more difficult for rabbits and other animals to get at them.
Renovations improve your home’s visual appeal and help you get more enjoyment from it, but they can also help you save money and the environment. Choosing the right alternative heating, power and roof systems are just a start. If you want help decided what to do first or where you can save the most energy, have an expert perform an energy audit on your home. And don’t forget to take advantage of the many rebates, grants and other financial incentives now available to families throughout the UK.
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