Survey on the energy transition – property owners are being left in the lurch

Survey on the energy transition – property owners are being left in the lurch
Survey on the energy transition – property owners are being left in the lurch

The solar company Autarq surveyed over 1,000 property owners about the energy transition. They are open to new technologies, but costs and income are dampening their willingness. There is also a lack of concrete advice on site. Women play a key role.

41.8 percent of German households live in their own four walls. They have a significant influence on whether the energy transition can succeed. Are they going along with it? Are they waiting? That is what the Energy Transition Report 2024 should find out. The data was collected by Bonsai Market Research. 1,036 owners were surveyed in writing on the topics of the energy transition. However, the survey is not representative; it only reflects the mood. The report was commissioned by Autarq. The company from Prenzlau in Brandenburg is a player in the solar market and produces solar roof tiles.

Solar is the focus of the energy transition

Some of the survey results were expected, others were surprising. It is hardly surprising that solar energy is the focus. The survey is aimed at owners who already have an existing property and not at people who are planning a new build. Solar energy is the easiest to “retrofit” – if the basic conditions are right. Added to this is the extreme drop in the price of modules and storage – while electricity prices are high. The focus is primarily on self-sufficiency, with only half of those surveyed thinking about marketing their own electricity.

Solar also has the best image in the survey. Typical classifications of respondents are: “With a solar system and a small storage unit, I can easily provide for myself during the day” and “I want to move more towards solar energy”.

Dispute over heat pump

The reputation of heat pumps is better than one might assume after the political squabbles. If the subsidies are right and money is not an issue, the survey asked, the heat pump would be the first investment in an existing property. After that come solar collectors and a wall box. Caution is advised when interpreting the data. Because of the high costs, the real decision may turn out differently than in the survey.

Not surprisingly, given the considerable investments involved, income is the deciding factor. The attitude towards the energy transition becomes more positive with higher income – according to the survey. The mood also shows: “We’ve done everything to save energy and are completely broke”, “expensive fun”, “priceless”.

Technology as a toy

According to the survey, women are less open to new technologies (12 percent) compared to 27 percent of men. At first glance, the result may seem surprising, but many men also see these systems as a great “toy” and are therefore enthusiastic about them. Of the 1,036 respondents, however, around 50 were very critical and 100 were at a loss. Their comments: “Total nonsense from the government,” “The greed of business and politics.”

Kai Buntrock, Managing Director of Autarq, draws this conclusion. On the one hand, there is a high willingness to invest, especially in combination with government subsidies. But there is a lack of proactive advice. People mainly get information from the Internet, but this information does not relate to the specific individual case. “Half of the owners surveyed feel let down when it comes to energy-saving renovations. Only one in four said that their own municipal utility company successfully supports them in this regard.”

Advice is needed

There is also a need for advice on heat pumps. The product name may be familiar, but the way it actually works is a mystery to many. “More targeted information campaigns, particularly by municipal utilities, can further increase the acceptance and use of heat pumps and effectively advance the energy transition,” says Buntrock. And last but not least, women should be specifically addressed in order to reduce existing skepticism. Of the 1,036 owners, 479 were women.

Source: Stern

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