Consumers rate comfort higher than cost savings
Elmhurst attended a fascinating presentation by the Energy Savings Trust which had recently surveyed householders as to when and why they would consider investing in energy efficiency improvements. The survey was undertaken by Ipsos MORI and had a sound statistical base.
Whilst some of the findings might be considered "common sense" it was interesting to hear that consumers are more enthusiastic about improving their comfort and well being, rather than saving money or saving the planet.
Homeowners planning improvements within three years was highest when;
- they expected elderly relatives to move in with them
- they had moved to a higher paid job
- they started planning to have a family"3 our
The most common time to improve your house was three to five years after moving in.
When asked to identify perceived issues with their current home 3 out of 6 "problems" would be resolved by improving the energy efficiency of the home.
- Cold draughts-19%
- Rooms that are hard to heat-18%
- Damp or mould in one or more rooms-15%
Only lack of storage space rated higher.
Most encouraging is that when asked where homeowners went for advice on energy efficiency only 49% trusted their DIY retailer, 59% their builder but 80% would trust an independent website and 83% an independent organisation.
The research was interesting, and Fanoula Ziouzia of EST presented it well. The message to sell energy on comfort, as opposed to environment and/or money saving, was thought provoking. Most evident was the consumer need for independent advice and surely that is what accredited energy assessors are all about. Elmhurst will be working with EST and Government to ensure that this connection is made and consumers get the advice they need to make the improvements they want.
More information on the research can be found on social media using #UKpulse and more information on EST is available at http://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/