Towards zero carbon new builds

When I wrote the piece about net energy producing social housing last night I hadn’t seen all of the proposals in Gordon Brown’s pre-Budget speech. Amongst the plans is the aim to have all new build homes zero net carbon producers within a decade. The carrot for this is a rebate on stamp duty for all new homes deemed to be zero carbon, to start next year.

There’s no definition of what constitutes a zero carbon home, we’ll have to wait for the Budget proper for that, and builders’ groups are already weighing in with complains about the rebate not covering the extra cost and house prices going up. Of course, house prices are rising regardless, and I’m sure there’s a case for larger mortgages on such properties because the savings on bills will make the buyers better off on a payment to payment basis.

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