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Solar Panel Installations Increase

According to figures from the Department of Energy and Climate Change, The Solar Trade Association (STA) say the installation of solar panels is on the increase. This follows a decline in the previous month as a result of the Government reducing the Feed-in-Tariffs (FiT) rates for the installation of solar photo voltaic (PV).

During the first week in June there were 1,788 completed solar installations.

The new Feed-in-Tariffs will see household payments reduced from 21p per kWh to 16p per kWh with the payment term reducing from 25 to 20 years. However, the Government has decided to delay the implementation of the new figures until August 2012.

Marcus Vassiliou is Sales Manager of EcoInvestments who are an alternative investment company said: “Investors may have been put off investing in UK solar, aware that feed-in tariffs have already been reduced, perhaps worried that they had missed the boat. Now, however, technology has progressed, enabling the price of reliable PV panels to come down to a level where investors can still obtain serious returns. We are encouraging solar panel fans to invest before the new tariff kicks in in August.”

However, research undertaken by the Association of Residential Lettings Agents (ARLA) indicates that the energy efficiency measures introduced by the Government are not catching on in the private rentals market.

Over 50% of landlords in the UK were not aware of the Green Deal energy policy of the Government. Furthermore, more than a third (36%) were not aware of their rental property’s energy rating even though all rental properties are required to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC).

Ian Potter who is Operations Manager at ARLA stated: “Our research suggests that landlords aren’t as clued up as they should be on the energy performance of their properties, and they are therefore not helping tenants to reduce both their energy consumption and energy costs. At a time when energy prices are rising, making a rental property more energy efficient could mean a big difference for tenants, and help a property stand out.

“Moreover, the Government is proposing a ‘minimum standard’ of energy efficiency in privately rented homes from April 2018 – likely to be set at an E rating. This means there really is a need to get on board with improving the energy performance of rental stock.”

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