Small building projects, such as, extensions and refurbishment work undertaken by homeowners using small building firms still have an important part to play in the overall health of the UK building industry. It is particularly vital for independent builders and the local merchants from where they buy their products. Manufacturers who either target the self-build and renovation market or have energy-efficient products to sell are also particularly keen for this area to be given every opportunity to thrive.
Pin Board was hoping that the Green Deal would help provide this, but it is becoming evident the Green Deal it is not attractive enough. This view is shared by the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) who claim that more than half of small building firms back a requirement by government on homeowners to make energy-efficiency improvements when they extend their home. This would result in more work for their business, as long as any regulation was introduced alongside financial incentives to help pay for the work.
Brian Berry, the Chief Executive of the FMB, commented: “Following a thorough consultation with FMB member firms, we believe the Government should re-evaluate the need for a consequential improvements regulation, but only alongside a significant financial incentive for energy efficiency. This could take the form of a reduction in VAT on home renovation and repair, variable stamp duty or variable council tax.”
Berry continued: “We still want to see government introduce financial incentives to increaseuptake of the Green Deal. At present, the Green Deal is simply not attractive to most people. New government research shows that 56% of people who have had a Green Deal Assessment have already installed at least one of the recommended measures, and a further 6% are in the process of having work done. However, very few are actually using Green Deal finance to fund the work, proven by the fact there are still only 12 'live' Green Deal Plans. The Green Deal must not be left to fail, which is why additional incentives are needed to increase the number of people who have a Green Deal Assessment and alsogo on to install the recommended measures.”
Berry added: “Further to that, government must invest the money collected via carbon taxes in a publicly funded retrofit programme. Low-income households cannot afford to retrofit their own home and are unlikely to sign up to a scheme like the Green Deal. Therefore government must commit to a public spending programme to lift significantly more households out of fuel poverty and support those who are unable to pay for this work.”
Berry concluded: “We are currently in the midst of party conference season and want to see all three main political parties make low-carbon refurbishment policies a priority. It is the only lever that can simultaneously tackle a broad range of economic, social and environmental problems.”
To read the FMB’s Strategy for the Low Carbon Building and Refurbishment Market in full, please click here.
Look at the latest construction and building products sales jobs with some of the leading manufacturers and distributors of energy efficiency products; including Insulation Sales Jobs and HVAC Sales Jobs.