When looking at the problem for a greener future many people point to cows or cars, when in fact the housing market is responsible, according to the Energy Savings Trust, for 21% of carbon emissions in the UK.
This huge part that we play means that we urgently need to look at how we can go green, and do so quickly in order to meet the priorities and goals set at COP26.
We can no longer ignore the problems that have been bubbling underneath and it’s time to evolve green housing and green finance to make them more appealing, accessible and realistic to our customers.
The future will likely see a rise in eco-conscious buyers as more customers want to secure both a green mortgage and greener finances, but we need to ensure we have those opportunities for them. Eventually, this will be regulated as we get nearer the COP26 deadlines, as energy ratings already are for landlords who have to meet an EPC C rating by 2025 for all mortgaged housing stock in their portfolio.
As we strive to increase higher adoption rates of green mortgages this brings with it a series of complex challenges that need to be addressed in order to be sustained, one being how best advice can holistically cater for customer circumstances, price and the environment.
However, I believe these difficulties can be solved through ‘Collective Leadership.’ By this I mean as an industry if we invest our time and resources into the problem as we see it today, we can make a positive impact that lasts for future generations.
How will Collective Leadership work for the industry?
If we don’t make greener mortgages more available to our customers we risk becoming penned in with measures that have been forced upon us, similar to the experience of the airline industry.
In order to move forward and make changes, I believe our industry first needs to own the problem and then collectively come together to reach our goals following COP26. If we work together we can revitalise the industry and benefit not just our own businesses and our customers but the whole planet itself.
Can we really meet the green agenda?
Through our CloudTwenty7 platform, we’ve seen promising signs for greener options, as lenders have taken a leadership role and offered better rates, cashback, and benefits to mortgage seekers willing to do their bit for the environment.
However, this alone is not enough.
As noble as it would be to act alone in solving this issue, market factors and fierce competition makes this difficult to achieve. This is why the whole industry must work together in order to lead the way with positive green behaviour changes and give our customers the same level of service when it comes to affordability, simplicity and efficiency.
Our technology advances and vast pool of talent in the industry through all sectors means that we have the data, resources and brainpower to make mortgages not only greener but simpler and more efficient.
We are way behind other sectors in the race for a greener future so now is the time to lace up and get moving. If we work together, collectively, we have an opportunity to ensure short term profitability, not to mention the chance to change the industry and lead the housing market into a better, greener future. It’s steps like this that really can change the world.
*Nathan Reilly is the Director of Lender Relationships at Twenty7Tec