Ryan wants energy efficiency ‘obligations’ for landlords

Ryan Wants Energy Efficiency ‘Obligations’ For Landlords
Green Party conference, © PA Wire/PA Images
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By Cillian Sherlock, PA

The Government will have to put energy-efficiency obligations to the rental sector in the future, Eamon Ryan has said.

Mr Ryan said such measures are a “next step” to be taken following the announcement that the Government was putting €500 million behind a new low-cost energy upgrade loan scheme for homeowners.


From Wednesday, homeowners can borrow from €5,000 to 75,000 at significantly lower interest rates to make their homes warmer and cheaper to run.

Billed as a first-of-its-kind scheme for the European Investment Bank (EIB), the Department of the Environment said it will play a “crucial role in helping homeowners invest in energy efficiency”.

Mr Ryan said it will make homes warmer and cheaper to run, as well as having health benefits for householders.

The scheme is delivered by the Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland (SBCI) on behalf of the Department, with the support of the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) and the EIB Group.


PTSB is the first financial institution to offer loans to homeowners under the scheme, with rates from 3.55 per cent.

AIB, Bank of Ireland, Avant Money and seven credit unions from the Irish League of Credit Unions are finalising the approval process and legal requirements to provide the scheme, and are expected to commence offering loans in the coming weeks.

At the moment, most green home improvement loan interest rates hover between 6 per cent and 7 per cent, with other personal loan rates ranging up to 14 per cent.

Households could also qualify for a lower cost green mortgage in the future after they use their low-cost loan to improve their Building Energy Rating (BER) up to the required level.


The loans can be used by homeowners who want to undertake a deep retrofit – involving several energy upgrades at the same time – or to carry out one or two upgrades that will improve the energy performance of the home.

In order to avail of the low-cost loans, the upgrade projects must be supported by an SEAI grant and be projected to achieve a minimum 20 per cent improvement in the energy performance (BER) of the building.

Homeowners will apply for the loans through the participating finance providers.

Unlike a mortgage, there will be no requirement for the loan to be secured against the property being upgraded.


Asked about whether renters would see any support for their bills if their landlords did not take efforts to make their homes more energy efficient, Mr Ryan said: “There is a real issue in terms of renters.

“We have to cover for every single householder and that’s a further next step we have to take in terms of where we put real obligations on the rental sector to make sure that [renters] are not left out.”

The chief executive of the SEAI, William Walsh, added that the scheme is available for “smaller non-corporate landlords”, where applications can be made for up to three properties.


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