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Minister wants green mortgage help - 15/11/2011

A member of the Scottish parliament has called on the UK government to provide assistance to those who want to benefit from cheap electricity and gas bills by moving to an energy efficient home.

According to the Press Association, cabinet secretary for infrastructure and capital investment Alex Neil has urged Westminster to work with banks to ensure mortgages are available for people looking to purchase a green property.

He says such a move would enable the public to take advantage of the best gas and electricity prices and also reduce carbon emissions.

Mr Neil states that "existing and prospective homeowners should be encouraged and supported to invest in new forms of technology and energy efficient measures".

He notes lenders can be "part of the solution" by providing attainable loans.

Currently, people buying a house need to pay an average deposit of as much as 25 per cent to be approved for a mortgage.

Head of policy for WWF Scotland Dr Dan Barlow backed Mr Neil's call, saying it is "essential" that the energy efficiency of homes is improved, especially in Scotland.

Favourable interest rates on green mortgages may be an ideal incentive for people to take action and make properties more efficient, he said.

Dr Barlow called on individuals to protect themselves against rising costs of energy, something comparing the best gas and electricity prices can help achieve.

Renewables UK recently claimed household fuel prices will continue to rise if the UK does not put a greater emphasis on using renewable sources such as wind and solar power, rather than relying on fossil fuels.

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