With actions now being put in place to reach carbon net zero by 2050; the U.K Government’s Heat and Building Strategy includes a gas boiler ban, which has become a cause for concern amongst many property owners. As part of the £3.9 billion plan, grants will be offered to homeowners across England and Wales. But despite this pledge; portfolio landlords and multiple property owners especially could be facing a significant financial burden, with the grants unlikely to cover the full costs of the upcoming changes. Additionally; there seems to have been a fair amount of misunderstanding over this topic. Will gas boilers be banned in 2025?
The UK Gas Boiler Ban – What does it mean to you?
If you’re worried about having to replace your existing gas boiler: you don’t have to be (at least currently). The gas boiler ban is starting specifically with new build properties (focusing on instillation as opposed to replacement). The installation of gas boilers will be banned in new-build homes by 2025, which will have to be heated instead by lower carbon alternatives.
Moving forwards though; the aim is to roll out the initiative to achieve the entire phasing out of gas boiler sales/instillations by 2035.
Will I eventually have to replace my existing gas boiler?
Any boiler will eventually, of course, will need to be replaced as a natural consequence of age/safety. But whilst commonly reported on as being a ‘ban’ (with headlines leading to concerns over the government ‘ripping out’ existing boilers); the 2035 target has been framed governmentally as more of an ‘ambition/target’.
The proposals have stated that no-one will be forced to replace an existing gas boiler. And given that the average lifetime of a gas boiler is around fifteen years; the costs of low-carbon alternatives are expected to have come down significantly in time for the proposed phasing out of new natural gas boilers (2035).
It is important to bear in mind also though, that whilst the Government have insisted that the boiler grant scheme will remain voluntary (and that there will be no legal requirement for an existing boiler to be replaced); many believe that this could become mandatory in the future.
Gas Boiler Replacement Grants: How much will I get?
As part of the initiative to give households access to more energy efficient heating technologies; homeowners in England and Wales, as of next April, will be able to apply for grants of £5,000 to replace their existing gas boilers with heat pumps or hydrogen boilers.
But with air sourced heat pumps ranging in costs from £6,000 to £18,000; significant concerns have been voiced over the ability to meet these costs, especially as things change long-term.
Additional concerns over the gas boiler grant initiatives not going far enough
Tim Rook, chief markets officer at Clade Engineering, leading designer and manufacturer of CO2 heat pumps has voiced his concerns over this, saying:
“It’s great to see the Government finally moving on the climate critical issue of heat and promoting heat pumps as the best form of sustainable heating technology on the market. However, the strategy is far too small and fails to adequately address the major issue of the difference between the price of gas and that of power.”
“If the Government were to rebalance this, it would transform the market and really drive mass adoption of low carbon heat pumps.”
“The strategy is further confused though by the inclusion of hydrogen and weakened by many follow-on consultations and studies. There is some content that is likely political bluster, such as the mention of 25 per cent price reductions for green technologies; and its disappointing to see house buildings being given at least three more years of building inefficient housing when we could be building better right now.”
“Decarbonising heat is one of the most effective ways of lowering emissions in the UK, but with 85 per cent of UK homes reliant on gas for heating, more needs to be done to improve access to green heating technologies. £5,000 grants will help just 90,000 households, a drop in the ocean against the 600,000 annual installations needed to reach Net Z.”
Here to help you make the right choices
If you are a portfolio landlord with concerns over meeting additional costs; our first-class property management system comes with the additional benefit of being able to take your guaranteed full market rent, a year in advance, at no extra cost. Find out how much you could get here – and please don’t hesitate to get in touch.