Energy efficiency measures that could add 16% to your home’s value

Energy efficiency measures that could add 16% to your home’s value

Homeowners planning to sell this summer are being urged to ‘go green’ as research reveals that energy efficiency measures can increase the value of your property, says This Is Money.

Improving a home’s energy efficiency rating could add more than £16,000 to the asking price, according to government analysis released this week. And it need not cost a fortune.

Richard Patterson, at myonline, says: ‘Buyers want measures that will save money on bills. The most common requests are double glazing, an efficient boiler, and loft and cavity wall insulation.

Home sellers must now produce an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC), which rates a home’s energy efficiency from G to A. About half of homes in the UK are rated D, but improving your EPC from band D to B adds £16,000, on average, to the sale price, according to the Government.

There are regional variations: the EPC rating is less significant in the East and South-East where house prices are higher, but the same improvements could boost a home’s value in the North-East by £25,000.

Ed Mead, at Douglas & Gordon estate agency, says: ‘Green measures are starting to have an effect, especially if buyers are torn between two similar houses.’

So how can you boost your home’s rating? Stephen O’Hara, at the Property & Energy Professional Association, says: ‘Ensure that your loft insulation is at least 270 mm thick.

You could install it yourself or pay a professional about £500 to do the job. Cavity wall insulation also costs about £500.

These two measures should boost your EPC rating by at least one band.’

Older properties may be harder to insulate, but there are other solutions. Hampshire resident Tony Restell, 39, lives in a grade II-listed thatched house that is hard to insulate because of its protected status, but instead features low-cost, energy-efficient heating.

Mr Restell says: ‘The previous owners installed a ground source heat pump, which extracts heat from the ground and runs on minimal electricity costs. From spring to late autumn, it provides all the heating and hot water we need.’

S ince the Restells moved in, they have added a wood-burning stove and a compost loo for the garden office. The Old Farmhouse in Denmead is on sale with The Country House Company for £910,000.

Homeowners should try to keep the period features of their home to maintain its value, and be aware that visible green installations may be unattractive to some buyers.

Adam Hesse, at Aston Mead estate agency in Surrey, says: ‘Solar panels tend to put off buyers. Many people don’t like to see wind turbines from a property — plus they can be incredibly noisy.’

Most new-build properties have an EPC rating of C or B, but few homes reach A status. James Alcock, at TheGreenAge, which offers energy efficiency home assessments, says: ‘It is relatively easy to boost your home from G to E or E to D with better heating and insulation. But it gets harder and more expensive to boost your rating once you reach C.

‘To get a rating of B or A you need to start producing your own electricity or hot water using solar PV, solar thermal or air-source heat pumps.’

Dean Barn in Wilmslow, Cheshire, is a rare A-rated barn conversion. It was transformed last year by developers Mac-Taylor into a super energy-efficient three-bedroom home featuring solar panels, an air-source heat pump, rainwater recycling and a grass roof on the annexe. The barn, near Alderley Edge, is on sale with Jackson-Stops and Staff for £899,995.

Those who can’t afford to pay for measures upfront could get a loan under the Government’s new Green Deal. This is repaid via the savings made on your energy bills, and the loan is attached to your house so any new owners would be responsible for repayments.