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Research Programmes

Homes of our Times (Year 1 Report)

Homes of our Times (Year 1 Report)

Publication Date :: 2010

BSHF is funding this research project with a leading social housing provider, Metropolitan Housing Partnership (MHP) which seeks to identify the sustainability impacts of how people live in their homes.

The research comprises a three-year longitudinal study on the environmental impacts of how 25 households, drawn from different home types, use their homes. Both qualitative and quantitative data are being collected. Part of the research is focusing on following the home, not the resident. It is important, for example, to understand the experience of a resident moving into a ‘greener’ home as the second or third tenant (rather than the first when all the support for the new technologies is still at hand).

Three annual fieldwork questionnaires are being carried out per property. The research seeks to determine what the experience and learning is from those living in the home, as well as those with responsibility for managing and maintaining the home.

The report of the first year’s research can be found in this document. Two further research reports will be available at a later date. The key findings from this first year’s survey are that:

  • Almost one quarter of residents did not get the desired result through their heating controls, and in some instances because of poor understanding of the technology, they didn't even know if their homes were heated by gas or electricity.
  • Despite being given energy saving advice in welcome packs when they moved into newly built homes, many residents had not read it.
  • Not one resident who had moved into a new property in the last two years was aware of their home’s Energy Performance Certificate (EPC), reinforcing the view that EPCs have limited visibility and are not actively considered by new occupiers.  
Author:: Matthew Bush, Sustainability Manager, Metropolitan Housing Partnership