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Sustainable technologies -The experience of housing associations. (NF63)

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This report looks into the social housing sector in the UK and the experiences gained through the use of sustainable technologies (energy efficiency & water efficiency technologies) with the aim of helping the wider house-building industry and others to make better-informed choices. The document identifies the technologies that have worked well, those that have given rise to concerns and the nature of those concerns.


The primary research was commissioned by the NHBC Foundation with the objectives to establish:


  • the uptake of specific technologies among housing associations to satisfy the sustainability and zero carbon agenda challenges; 
  • their reasons for choosing specific technologies;
  • experiences in design, installation, commissioning, use by residents, maintenance, and other important issues;
  • which technologies they would use again and which they would seek to avoid;
  • lessons learned and advice to others seeking to use such technologies.


Surveying over 200 housing associations, the research key findings include:


  • there is widespread use of sustainable technologies by housing associations; 
  • code for Sustainable Homes, planning or funding requirements influences technology use;
  • cost of the technology influences its installation; 
  • water efficiency measures are installed four times more often than energy efficiency;
  • inadequate installation skills is an issue;
  • technology use is benefitting residents;
  • but residents could benefit further with better understanding;
  • associations have encountered difficulties in measuring performance and benefits;
  • heat pumps are delivering poor levels of satisfaction;
  • some infrequently installed technologies have high levels of satisfaction;
  • the broad use of photovoltaics is likely to continue.


Download the full report at: