Demo homes

The Social Housing Tenant Climate Jury said:

“There needs to be mock-ups of a retrofitted house which people can visit (in person or virtual tours) and learn how to use the new technologies through training.”

This was mirrored by the Heartwarming Homes Tenant Advisory Group.  They felt people should be able to visit a demo home and see the technology in action.

Demo homes work particularly well for full house retrofit projects, as there is more new technology for residents to learn about. Colleagues can show them how things work and explain more about what is in involved in fitting the energy efficiency improvements. Residents will also be able to experience the look and feel of a retrofitted home, so they can be confident their home will feel warm and cosy after the work has taken place.

Fitting out an unoccupied home before starting work on other similar homes in the area is great opportunity for learning. You can identify potential issues and fix them before starting work on residents’ homes.

Sometimes it isn’t practical to offer a demo home, for example if you’re working on a small project with no unoccupied homes. The next best thing is a virtual tour of an energy efficient home. We’ve created a 3D tour of a retrofitted home, which includes information labels about the different types of technology. You can download this and share with residents or upload it to your website.

You can find the shareable demo home link here.

MSV’s Cosy Home

MSV fitted a range of energy efficiency measures including internal wall insulation, an air source heat pump, solar panels, and mechanical ventilation, in a traditional pre-war brick-built terraced house in Moss Side in Manchester. This type of home can be challenging to make greener, and MSV has 1,300 similar homes.

They opened the ‘Cosy Home’ to the local community, and other stakeholders, to show what can be done.  The opportunity to see the green technology in action and experience the warm and comfortable feel of the home, reassured people who were due to have work done.

The contractor was based at the Cosy Home while doing retrofit work in homes on the surrounding streets. This meant they were in the community, and able to answer ongoing queries and concerns. The MSV Tenant Liaison Officer and staff were also on site weekly to reassure residents and deal with any issues immediately.

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