Our Retrofit Programme


As one of the largest housing associations in the UK, we've a responsibility to be proactive on sustainability. That's why we've committed to ensuring 80% of our homes reach EPC band C by 2025

Our Energy Retrofit Programme sets out the number of homes we need to improve each year up to 2030. We ensure a joined up approach with teams throughout Optivo so work fits in with existing plans to replace and upgrade components in your home.


What is Retrofitting? 

Retrofitting is the process of modifying a home after it's been built.  Retrofitting a home could involve changing the systems or structure. This work can improve amenities for the residents and improve the performance of the building, making it cheaper to run. 


Examples of Retrofitting 


Air source Heat Pump

An air source heat pump, transfers heat from the outside air to water, which heats your rooms via radiators. It can also heat water stored in a hot water cylinder for your hot taps, showers and baths.

Cavity Wall Insulation

Cavity wall insulation is used to reduce heat loss through a cavity wall by filling the air space with material that stops heat transfer. This captures the air within the cavity, preventing heating loss and resulting in reduced heating costs

External Wall Insulation

External walls can be insulated by adding an insulating layer, on the outside of your home , to prevent heat from escaping through your walls while keeping the cold out.

Internal Wall Insulation

Internal wall insulation is used to insulate solid wall properties by fitting insulation to the inside walls of your home, creating a thermal barrier between the inside of your home and the outdoor, dramatically reducing heat loss.

Loft Insulation

Glass fibre insulation is one of the most widely used materials for loft roll insulation. The layer of insulation traps heat inside the rooms below the loft, so the air within your property stays warmer for longer. It also keeps cold air from outside entering your property. This means you do not have to heat your home as much to achieve the same temperature in each room.

Roof insulation

Room-in-roof insulation involves fitting insulating material between and over the rafters (the sloping timbers that make up the roof itself). This can be done with rigid insulation boards, cut to size, or alternatively you can have foam insulation sprayed between the rafters.

Solar Panels

Solar technologies convert sunlight into electrical energy either through photovoltaic (PV) panels or through mirrors that concentrate solar radiation. This energy can be used to generate electricity 

Frequently Asked Questions

I’ve had home surveys before, why is this different?

This retrofit survey is more detailed.  It will measure the current energy efficiency of your home and identify what we can do to reduce the amount of energy you use to heat your home.  To meet government targets on affordable warmth, we must ensure all homes are at least EPC Band C by 2030.

What precautions will be taken around COVID-19?

We’ve assessed the risks in line with Government guidance. For your safety, and that of the assessor, they’ll be wearing face protection and will sanitise their hands before entering your home. They will also maintain safe social distancing.

If anyone in your household is self-isolating, displaying symptoms, tested positive for COVID-19, please contact Bierce or inform the assessor immediately upon arrival. In these circumstances, we will not carry out an assessment and will contact you to rearrange.

What work will be done if my home is eligible for energy efficiency work?

There are various measures that we will look to carry out, including:


  • Loft insulation
  • External wall insulation
  • Internal wall insulation
  • Cavity wall insulation
  • New windows
  • New heating system e.g., with an air source heat pump


For further information on the above measures, click here

Why would my home not be eligible for energy efficiency work?

Your home may already meet the current energy efficiency standards, so we don’t need to do anything just yet. We’ll review this in the future when the new standards come in.

Will the survey capture any repairs I might have?

The assessment will be focused on collecting energy data only. Assessors will not be able to log and raise repairs on your behalf. So, if you need to report a repair to us you can raise this through our online service, MyAccount or you can call us on 0200 121 60 60.

How Retrofitting is helping people like you

My home has been retrofitted and I couldn’t be happier!

Retrofit-Mr-Denton.pngOptivo resident Mr Denton had an air source heat pump and solar panels fitted to his home in December 2020, to replace storage heaters at make his home more energy efficient.

“With the old storage heaters, there was no control over the heating and it ran out at the end of the day. Now, with the new air source heat pump and solar panels, there is a constant supply of hot water and saving on the use of an immersion heater.”

Making note of the money he is now saving on energy bills he added:

“Before the retrofit works, my average electricity cost was £1.10 per day. This is now down to just 56p day!”

My retrofitted home has cut my energy bills in half

Retrofit-Mrs-Keller-(2).pngMrs Keeler had an Air Source Heat Pump installed as part of our retrofit programme.

Previously, her home was heated by night storage heaters, meaning she needed to use a lot more energy to heat it up.

 Now, with retrofits installed, Mrs Keeler not only has a warmer home but the upgrades have halved her energy bills

“Before installation, my energy bill was £297. Now, I’m paying £84.90!”



Retrofit Guides 

Find a guide on how to use any retrofit appliances in your home 

Air Source Heat Pump Guide

High Heat Retention Storage Heaters (HHRSH) Guide

Insulation Guide 

Loft and Cavity Wall Insulation Guide

Solar PV Guide