Bedfordshire, UK
Project Partners
Places for People

The challenge: scaling up deep retrofit for social housing

The UK retrofit agenda has failed to scale up over the last few decades. Despite rounds of policy attempting to address it, UK housing stock still has some of the worst energy efficiency levels in Western Europe. Social housing decarbonisation is currently receiving significant government grant support. Though this is applauded, it will not scale into an energy efficiency market without the development of business and operational models which allow retrofitting to be funded through social housing capital.

We worked on an Energy Redress grant-funded project in partnership with Places for People, focussing on a deep retrofit project of the Adamson Court development in Bedford - a typical 1970s mid-rise block. Alongside Etude, SOAP retrofit and Currie & Brown, we sought to solve three key challenges facing the social housing sector:

• Providing energy security for tenants through the current cost of living crisis

• Generating income streams and cost reductions for the social landlord

• Ensuring the future viability of their assets

I was impressed with Bioregional’s expertise, ambition, and professionalism in delivering a groundbreaking deep retrofit model for Adamson Court that met every objective we set – a financially viable solution that would drive down energy use in hard-to-treat properties, extend the life of our assets, and ease the impact of high energy prices on our customers.

Derek Watters, Head of Environmental Sustainability, Places for People

How we helped: designing a deep energy efficiency retrofit and ‘heat as a service’ operating model

We designed a deep energy efficiency retrofit and innovative ‘heat as a service’ operating model that will reduce and stabilise tenant heating costs while adequately heating homes, and generating a revenue stream for the social landlord to pay down the capital costs of the retrofit.

The impact: creating a replicable model for carbon and cost savings

average saving per household per year on heating bills
tenants protected from 50% of future energy price rises through inflation.
reduction in heating energy demand
reduction in carbon emissions against the existing building
40 years
our model pays back fabric capital costs in 40 years

Our deep retrofit fabric solution achieves a 76% reduction in heating energy demand and an 82% reduction in carbon emissions against the existing building.

Minimising energy costs is increasingly important as the cost-of-living crisis hits the poorest members of society hardest. Social housing tenants on pre-payment meters have seen their bills rise by over 54%. Many of these tenants face high bills from thermally inefficient homes, forced to choose between heating and eating. To help combat this, we developed a price formula which saves an average of £220 per household per year on heating bills, while also protecting tenants from 50% of future energy price rises.

With social-housing decarbonisation fund support, our model pays back capital costs of the deep retrofit in 40 years, and it is replicable and scalable across all electrically heated social housing blocks.

Interested in our retrofit consultancy services?

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Ronan Leyden
Director of Consultancy

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