Decarbonising social housing

decarbonising social housing


Reaching net zero carbon by 2050 is without question, one of the biggest ambitions set by the UK government to help tackle climate change.

Did you know that residential housing is responsible for 22% of all UK carbon emissions? And that social housing contributes 10% of this. Decarbonising social housing is therefore critical to achieving the government’s ambition of net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

The good news is that the social housing sector has a proven track record in adopting new technologies and delivering thermally efficient homes and has already taken a leading role when it comes to cutting down emissions. But significant challenges are needed to be overcome if we are to retrofit at scale and decarbonise by 2050.

How efficient is the UK’s current housing stock?

Housing association homes are already more energy-efficient than any other type of home, and housing associations are planning to invest billions of pounds over the next ten years.

In the previous ten years, energy efficiency has improved across all tenures with social housing performing the best. Did you know that 60% of housing association dwellings and 50% of local authority dwellings were EPC rated between A-C. This Compares to 29% of owner-occupiers and 33% in the private rented sector (according to the 2018/29 English Housing survey). Social housing is also the least expensive to run with average modelled energy costs of around £630 per annum compared to around £1,000 in the private sector.

Smart meters and a higher proportion of cavity wall and loft insulation are also more likely to be found in social rented homes.

The biggest challenge

One of the biggest challenges to the sector is tackling heating provision – 85% of all UK housing uses gas central heating. By 2025 gas boilers in new-build homes are meant to be phased out although there is talk of this being extended, however, this would seriously impact the drive towards becoming carbon neutral and the 2050 target and it is in everyone’s interest to find suitable carbon-free alternatives.

Decarbonising Social Housing – what we’re doing

Retrofitting green heating technology into housing association homes is one of the many ways in which Thermatic Homes is helping housing associations reduce their carbon footprint.

We’ve retrofitted homes with air and ground-source heat pumps. We’ve installed Solar PV and Solar Thermal, EV car charging units, CHP, battery storage and so much more.

In addition to this, we’ve also been providing training for our client’s workforce and engineers in the fitting and use of green technologies.
Our retrofitting services don’t end there. For housing associations across the UK, we are providing an array of electrical, mechanical and building services including:

– Full rewires
– Upgrades to electrical and heating installations
– Smart controls
– EICR Compliance Testing
– Kitchen & bathroom replacement & upgrades
– Smoke & heat detection upgrades
– Reactive & first response
– Property insulation
– Full property refurbishment

If you’re looking to retrofit your housing stock, get in touch. With national coverage and a wealth of experience, we’re in the best position to support your needs. We’re always happy to talk about retrofitting – drop us a call on 0161 543 4128 or email us at

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