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How to make your home more energy-efficient

An energy-efficient home can help lower your bills and save you money.

There are many ways you can save energy, such as turning down the thermostat or washing your clothes at a lower temperature. But as well as changing your habits, you can also make changes to your home to make it more energy efficient. 

Here, we look at:

What is retrofitting?

Ways to reduce heat loss in your home

Heating your home using lower carbon fuel

Generating your own renewable energy

Ways to finance energy-saving home improvements

What is retrofitting?

Retrofitting means improving the energy efficiency of your home. This means potentially lowering your home’s energy bills and carbon emissions and helping your home to stay warmer for longer.  

Some retrofitting actions are cheaper and quicker, like changing your light bulbs to more energy-efficient ones. Other actions may be more costly and require professional help, like installing a heat pump. 

Making your home more energy-efficient could:  

  • Save you money on your energy bills
  • Lower your carbon footprint
  • Increase the value and attractiveness of your home

Ways to reduce heat loss in your home

Cavity wall insulation

A cavity wall consists of two walls separated by a gap called the cavity. To prevent heat loss and potentially reduce energy costs, insulation material can be injected into the cavity from the outside.

Solid wall insulation

A solid wall has no cavity. These walls can be insulated from the inside or outside to help reduce your energy bills by preventing heat from escaping. Internal wall insulation is usually cheaper but can be more disruptive, while external wall insulation could require planning permission.

Floor insulation

Installing floor insulation can help make your home feel warmer and reduce draughts. In most cases, only the ground floor will need insulation. However, you can also insulate floors above unheated spaces, like garages.

Roof and loft insulation

According to the Energy Saving Trust, a quarter of heat is lost through the roof in an uninsulated home. Insulating your loft, attic or roof can help reduce heat loss and potentially reduce your heating bills. Adding rolls of mineral wool to your loft or roof can help keep it insulated.

Double and triple-glazed windows

Double and triple-glazed windows can reduce heat loss and condensation build-up, as well as potentially shield your home from outside noise.

Heating your home using lower carbon fuel

According to the Energy Saving Trust, over half of the fuel bills are spent on heating and hot water in a typical household. Having an efficient heating system can help reduce your fuel bills and reduce your carbon emissions.

Heat pumps

Heat pumps transfer heat from the air or ground into your home using electricity, heating your home and water. They use less electricity than the amount of heat that they generate, making them more energy efficient. Costs depend on the size of the heat pump and your property but are generally suitable for most homes.

Generating your own renewable energy

Renewable energy comes from sources like sunlight and wind. These energy sources are ‘renewable’ because they can replenish themselves. This is different from fossil fuel energy like oil and gas, as these will eventually run out. 

Solar panels

According to the Energy Saving Trust, installing solar panels could lower your energy bills. They convert sunlight to electricity, which you can use to power your appliances and lighting. You can also invest in a solar panel battery to store generated electricity for later use.

The amount of energy generated will depend on the size of your home and the number of solar panels installed. However, buying and installing solar panels can be expensive. Take the time to compare installers and products to get the best value for money. 

Ways to finance energy-saving home improvements

Financial initiatives

You might be able to get help for energy-saving improvements to your home, including access to grants, loans, and government initiatives. For example:

Personal savings

If you have cash available, using your savings can be an option to fund home improvements, especially smaller projects such as draught-proofing. You can also avoid paying possible interest that may come with borrowing. But make sure you check to see if there are any charges for withdrawing your savings and if you have enough money left over for an emergency fund

Borrow more money against your home

You may be able to borrow more money against your home. This can help fund home improvements, like making your home more energy-efficient. You’ll need to think carefully about securing a loan against your home as it can be repossessed if you can't keep up with the repayments.

Calculate what your monthly repayments could be

Home improvement loan

A home improvement loan allows you to spread the cost of your project without increasing your mortgage. Our home improvement loan calculator can help you work out what your monthly payments could be, based on our representative rate for the amount you enter. 

Today we finance a number of industries that significantly contribute to greenhouse gas emissions. We have a strategy to help our customers to reduce their emissions and to reduce our own. For more information visit

Verified by energy saving trust

Energy Saving Trust

Energy Saving Trust is an independent organisation dedicated to promoting energy efficiency, low carbon transport and sustainable energy use to address the climate emergency.

Any reference in this article to Energy Saving Trust has been verified by Energy Saving Trust. Last updated April 2024.

This article was last updated on 02/05/2024, 11:00