Press Release – Low Cost Retrofit Loan Scheme

New survey reveals over two-thirds of homeowners seeking to retrofit their homes say they will need a loan

  • New research finds nearly half of homeowners (44%) are likely to carry out home energy improvements in their homes in the next two years
  • But two thirds (67%) say they will need a loan
  • The research comes as the Government today announces a new Retrofit Loan Scheme, allowing homeowners to borrow up to €75,000 for home retrofit upgrades at reduced rates

Wednesday, 24th April 2024: Homeowners considering retrofitting their houses for energy efficiency are presented with an unprecedented opportunity as the Government today announces the introduction of a groundbreaking Retrofit Loan Scheme.

This €500 million scheme is welcomed by Electric Ireland Superhomes as a significant step in helping homeowners afford to invest in energy efficiency measures by offering homeowners access to Government-backed, low-interest loans of up to €75,000.

PTSB is the first financial institution to offer the retrofit loan scheme, at an attractive rate of 3.55%. Other major lenders are set to follow. Such loans are designed to facilitate investments in retrofitting, ultimately making homes more energy-efficient, warmer, healthier and environmentally sustainable.

Homeowners can avail of the scheme subject to certain conditions. The works must be carried out by an SEAI registered ‘One Stop Shop’, energy partner, such as Electric Ireland Superhomes, or communities project coordinator. To avail of the loan any home energy upgrade must achieve a minimum 20% improvement in the energy performance of the building.

This comes at a crucial time, as recent Red C research commissioned by Electric Ireland Superhomes indicates that nearly half of homeowners (44%) are planning to carry out home energy improvements in their homes within the next two years. But two thirds (67%) of these homeowners say they are likely to need a loan to do these upgrades, underscoring the importance of this new loan scheme in overcoming financial barriers hindering progress towards energy-efficient homes.

“The new low-cost Retrofit Loan Scheme will be transformative for homeowners and for the entire retrofitting industry,” said Managing Director of Electric Ireland Superhomes, Stephen O’ Connor. “Everybody wants a comfortable warm home with low energy bills but despite the generous grants available from the SEAI, our research indicates that the upfront costs of a home energy upgrade is a significant barrier for homeowners who don’t have sufficient savings. This loan scheme will remove this barrier enabling more people to make their homes warmer, more comfortable, healthier, more sustainable and energy efficient,” he added.

Homeowners availing of this new retrofit loan scheme will have the opportunity to invest in home upgrades such as wall insulation, heat pump installation and correct air ventilation to achieve warmer and greener homes.

According to the Red C research, commissioned by Electric Ireland Superhomes, the most common energy upgrades are floor wall and roof insulations, followed by upgrades to windows and doors.

“Retrofitting more homes in Ireland is a key element of the Government’s plans for a transition to a low carbon society,” Mr. O’Connor continued Since it established in 2021, Electric Ireland Superhomes has carried out more than 900 deep retrofits in homes across Ireland, moving more than 90% of homes to an A BER rating. This new low-cost loan scheme will make a huge difference to many homeowners and will encourage more to carry out home energy upgrades,” he added.

Top five benefits to homeowners taking a low-cost loan to finance house retrofitting:

  1. Affordable Access to Retrofitting: The Retrofit Loan Scheme provides homeowners with affordable access to necessary upgrades, addressing the financial barrier faced by over half of homeowners who anticipate needing a loan for retrofitting.
  2. Energy Efficiency Savings: By investing in retrofitting measures with the help of low-cost loans, homeowners can realise savings on their energy bills over time, offsetting the cost of the loan.
  3. Increased Property Value: Retrofitting homes can potentially increase the value of the property, attracting environmentally conscious buyers. With a low-cost loan, homeowners can make these improvements with less financial strain.
  4. Environmental Impact: Retrofitting homes for energy efficiency contributes to reducing carbon emissions and mitigating climate change. By utilising low-cost loans, homeowners can support environmental sustainability without funding the full upfront cost on their own.
  5. Improved Comfort and Health: Retrofitting measures such as better insulation and ventilation enhance indoor comfort and air quality, leading to a healthier living environment. By investing in these improvements through a low-cost loan, homeowners can improve their quality of life.

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