BMF calls for bigger thinking to transform homes under the Green Industrial Revolution

The Builders Merchants Federation (BMF) has welcomed the Prime Minister’s blueprint for greener homes and buildings (announced 18 November) – but says more needs to be done to ensure the scheme leaves a lasting legacy for the UK’s housing stock.

The BMF says the government’s 10-point plan for a Green Industrial Revolution, which includes £1 billion next year to drive efficiencies in new and existing homes and public buildings, as well as a year-long extension to the Green Homes Grant voucher scheme, is a step in the right direction.

However, the Federation says that the approach needs to align with a broader, long-term strategy, to make a meaningful impact.

John Newcomb, chief executive officer of the BMF, said: “We pressed to extend the Green Homes Grant deadline following feedback from members that more time was required to allow people to plan their improvements and source a registered trader to undertake the work.

“While it is excellent news that the grant scheme has been extended, it cannot be a one-off initiative if the government is to achieve its aims both to improve energy efficiency and level up housing conditions throughout the country.”

John continued: “As a member of the Construction Leadership Council, we believe the route to achieve this is through a National Retrofit Strategy that would involve upgrading approximately 28 million properties to ensure the money spent makes a lasting difference to the quality of our homes.”

“We are presented with an enormous opportunity to move towards a low- or zero-carbon future in both homes and workplaces. If we can link this to a National Retrofit Strategy, then we can improve lives, create jobs, boost the economy and make greater inroads towards the government’s target of net zero emissions by 2050.”