Knowledge Centre

Home insulation guide

Everything you need to know about getting your home insulated

The UK remains one of the least energy efficient nations in Europe. It is estimated that over 7 million homes across England, Scotland, and Wales have inadequate or no insulation. This is costing homeowners hundreds of pounds in unnecessary energy bills every year and leaving a negative impact on the environment.

The UK government has made energy efficiency one of its key initiatives over the past decade or so, with the aim to get as many homes and buildings as possible properly insulated. Many new builds are constructed with insulation already installed. However, older houses will need to undergo a proper energy survey, conducted by a registered professional, to determine what insulation measures are best suited to make the property more energy efficient in line with national guidelines.

With energy prices continuing to rise, it’s never made more sense to invest in insulation for your property. At Smartstone, we’ve made it our mission to educate you on the benefits of insulation, help you get quality insulation for less, and guide you on all the latest funding schemes designed to cover your insulation expenses.

The benefits of home insulation

Studies conducted across the UK continue to show that uninsulated properties are losing a significant amount of heat through their walls, windows, and roofs. Homeowners are spending a small fortune on heating their homes, only to lose that generated heat through lack of insulation. It’s money going to waste when the solution is super simple.

The most effective method to make a building more heat efficient is through insulation. However, as most insulation projects cost a fair amount, you are likely to question whether the expense is worth it in the long run. Will you actually see a difference in your energy bills and enjoy a cosier house?

The answer is almost always a resounding yes!

Having the right insulation materials correctly installed in your home will provide countless benefits, including:  

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A more comfortable home

First of all, insulation helps maintain stable temperatures indoors, creating a cosier, more comfortable home throughout the year. Not only does insulation keep your home warm when it’s cold outside, it will also keep your indoors more temperate in the warmer months.

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Energy efficiency & lower bills

When we feel cold indoors, we turn the heating up. However, without the right insulation, it’s likely that you are losing a fair amount of this heating. This ultimately results in wasted money on heating bills as the heat escapes. Insulation is guaranteed to lower your energy bills and make your property more energy efficient.

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Helps fight damp

Quality insulation materials prevent pesky household problems, such as condensation, mould spores, and damp. These problems usually arise when a surface, such as your home’s walls, is colder than the water vapour outside. Both internal and external insulation raise the temperature of your walls, making it less likely for water vapour to condense on them.

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A quieter home

Depending on the insulation you use in your walls, floors, and roof, you could also benefit from an overall quieter house. Certain types of insulation will reduce noise travelling from room to room, from next-door neighbours, and general sounds coming from outside your house.

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Add value to your property

Installing adequate insulation is a sure-fire way to raise your property’s Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating. An improved EPC rating will increase your property’s value. In London this can potentially raise the value of your property by as much as £40,000.

Types of home insulation

Insulation works by installing a layer on or between major surfaces within your house, which will greatly reduce heat loss. There are many types of insulation measures and materials to choose from.

Materials range from rock mineral wool, loose-fill, and rigid foam to spray foam and structured insulated panels. Each material is graded according to its efficiency to ensure heat escapes more slowly from your property.

With so many variables to choose from, home insulation can prove confusing to many people. At Smartstone, we can guide you on selecting the best insulation materials that best suit your property. Our assessors will determine your property’s age, the types of walls and floors you have inside your home, and how exposed your house is to wind driven rain. All these factors will help us draw up a thorough, evidence-based recommendation plan for how you can best insulate your house and make the most savings.

The most common types of insulation that are proven to improve your property’s energy efficiency, include:

Underfloor insulation

Insulating your ground floors can help you reduce draughts and heat loss by up to 15%. This form of insulation is particularly recommended for houses with easy access to the crawl space under the property.

Cavity wall insulation

Installing insulation in your cavity walls is one of the most effective measures to reduce heat loss. It can also save you up to £255 on your energy bills every year.

Room in roof insulation

UK houses lose around 25% of their heat from the roofs alone. Room in roof and loft insulation will make your property more energy efficient and potentially create cosy living spaces on the upper levels of your house.

Pitched roof insulation

With up to 25% of heat loss through your roof, pitched roof insulation can make a significant impact on your home’s energy efficiency.

Home insulation survey

Many so-called Insulation ‘experts’ are only too happy to sell you insulation measures, which at best you may not even need, and at worst may cause costly damage to your property. At Smartstone, we have built a reputation for providing honest and trustworthy advice to consumers on all things insulation and have assisted thousands of satisfied clients with applying for government-backed insulation grants.

We provide homeowners based in England, Scotland, and Wales with free on-site insulation surveys. This will help determine which measures and insulation materials will help you save the most pounds. We can also guide you on whether you’re eligible for funding and help you with the application process. 

Why not apply for a free home energy survey conducted by a qualified independent energy assessor?

Home insulation costs & savings

The exact savings you can hope to make by insulation depend on many factors. These can range from:

  • cost of installation and the quality of the materials
  • your current level of insulation
  • your home’s current EPC rating
  • how much you currently pay for energy

During your free Smartstone home survey, your assessor will give you a quote based on the most suitable measures that will have the greatest impact on your home’s carbon footprint. You will also be provided with a realistic estimation on what you can save on energy bills, including a costs/benefits analysis which details the savings you’ll make over the initial cost of installation. Finally, we can help you check whether you’re entitled to any government funding to help towards the cost and reduce your insulation expenses significantly.

Home insulation grants & funding

There are a variety of home insulation funding grants which run from time to time in the UK. These schemes are designed to cover all or part of your expenses related to installing insulation in your home.

Currently the main initiative for supporting energy efficiency improvements within British households is the ECO3 scheme. This government-backed funding initiative covers works relating to insulation and heating enhancements.

Our team of assessors at Smartstone can help you determine whether you’re eligible for funding and provide an estimate for how much you are entitled to receive to carry out your installation works.

Home insulation companies & installers

As with any major household works, finding a trusted tradesperson is key to the success of your insulation project.

When choosing an insulation company, it’s important to look out for various signs which will indicate whether an installer is accredited and be trusted to carry out your insulation works. On top your list of things to look out for should be a government TrustMark. When you choose a TrustMark Registered Business, you are engaging a company that has been thoroughly vetted to meet required standards and has made a commitment to good customer service.

The Qualitymark Protection is another reputable accreditation, which has been raising standards across the home improvements industry through a strict and thorough vetting and accreditation process.

It is also highly recommended to check whether your insulation installer has the required qualifications, such as the [PAS2030 BBA], and is registered with creditable bodies such as the National Insulation Association (NIA) or the Cavity Insulation Guarantee Agency (CIGA), which represent reputable companies in the insulation industry, including manufacturers and installers.

Of course, choosing an installer can be as confusing as determining what insulation you need. At Smartstone, we are contact with a trusted and reputable network of insulation surveyors, installers, suppliers, and manufacturers, with years of proven experience in the industry. We can help you choose qualified installers within your local area and are happy to vouch for the quality of their work.

Next steps...

Is it actually worth installing home insulation?

Find out if your home is suitable for insulation measures and how much you could realistically save on your energy bills with a free home energy audit.

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