Monday 25 April 2016 10:17 am

Ikea is starting to sell solar panels in the UK

Ikea has started stocking solar panels in its stores across the UK, while heralding the renewable energy source as "the future".

The flat-pack furniture retailer said solar panels will be available online and in three stores. Customers will be able to buy them in Glasgow, Birmingham and Lakeside, before they're rolled out in the so-called Solar Shops set to crop up in the firm's UK stores this year.

Read more: Work has started on Europe's biggest floating solar panel project

Ikea has named Solarcentury as its UK business partner, which will provide solar expertise and supply local installers from its trusted network.

The move comes despite cuts to small scale solar electricity panels on homes by the UK government. Ikea said a home solar system still remains one of the best investments a homeowner can make today with a six per cent annual return, allowing people to pay off the capital invested in roughly 11 years.

Research by Ikea found that around a third of UK homeowners want to invest in solar panels, with about 60 per cent citing a desire to cut their electricity bills.

Read more: The world's first parliament to go entirely solar is

Joanna Yarrow, head of sustainability at Ikea UK and Ireland, said: “At Ikea we believe that renewable energy is undoubtedly the power of the future. We’re already using solar power across our operations, and it’s exciting to be able to help households tap into this wonderful source of clean energy.

"Despite the challenging UK renewable energy policy situation, we want to turn solar into an essential part of any home and believe our new 'Solar Shops' will be a major milestone in making this happen.”