Lapford homes demonstrate retrofit future
Two previously void properties in Lapford were on display for Mid Devon Councillors to view in December – showcasing achievable improvements the Council could make to decarbonise its housing stock.
Over the previous few months, work was carried out and equipment installed at two bungalows in Prospect Way which reflect the highest level of energy efficiency the Council hope to achieve within this building archetype. The performance of the systems within the homes will be monitored for the first year of their occupancy and will help to:
- Determine the lowest possible carbon footprint the Council can expect to achieve;
- Determine budgets for future works; and
- Indicate the level of carbon offset required to achieve net zero targets.
A state-of-the-art heating and cooling system from UNICO has been installed in both properties, delivering benefits of air filtration (similar to that of a GP surgery), adjustable heating and cooling for cold winter months/hot summer months as well as a humidistat controlled mechanical extraction vent (MEV) which can remove excess moisture. This means that they would be suitable for people with respiratory diseases whilst also suitable for people with a compromised immune system.
Further adaptations have been made, including: increased cavity wall and loft insulation, newly fitted doors and windows, solar PV and/or solar thermal, internal renovation with upgraded kitchens and level access showers making these truly lifelong properties.
These homes meet decarbonisation targets set out in the recently adopted Housing strategy, with the Council looking to achieve a minimum Energy Performance Certificate of C (standard) in all properties by 2030 and becoming net zero by 2050 by retrofitting and upgrading existing properties.
Councillor Bob Evans, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Housing and Property Service said:
“It was a great opportunity to see these properties first hand. They are real, tangible examples of how we can achieve our decarbonisation targets through bringing our current housing stock up-to-date. Making the Councils housing stock carbon neutral a reality is not going to be easy and will be financially challenging but these first steps are a positive sign of progress.“The many benefits of these properties speak for themselves. It is my hope that we can bring more and more of these improvements to Mid Devon residents in the near future – helping to make houses more liveable and most importantly, feel like home.”
The Council has existing carbon budget commitments to meet its targets with a recent bid for additional funding of £2.1 Million submitted to the Government’s Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund (SHDF).
From 2022, all new projects and new build Council homes will be an Energy Performance Certificate of A (very efficient) and achieve Net Zero energy performance.