Energy efficiency 'ups home value'



Making homes well-insulated and energy efficient could add tens of thousands of pounds to their value, according to research from the Government.

Energy-saving improvements boost house prices by 14% on average, with increases of up to 38% in some parts of the country, the research based on 300,000 property sales in England between 1995 and 2011 claimed.

Improving a house's energy performance certificate (EPC) rating from the bottom band G up to E, or from band D to B, can add £16,000 to the sale price of an average property, the study from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) said.

Comparisons of similar properties where the main difference is their EPC rating reveals energy efficiency is a factor in buying homes, particularly in the North East where it can push up the price by almost two-fifths.
However, it does not have a significant impact in the South East and eastern England, where house prices are much higher to start with, and where the value of improvements would be proportionally much smaller. In the commuter-belt, demand and prices are driven by location.

The Government released the study ahead of the publication of the first set of results for its flagship home energy efficiency programme, the Green Deal, which covers the upfront costs of making improvements with money paid back through savings on energy bills.

More than 18,000 assessments of properties have been conducted since the scheme kicked off at the beginning of the year, and later this month DECC will reveal how many households have signed up to green deals so far.

Energy and climate change minister Greg Barker said: "We have long known the benefits of making energy-saving improvements to the home, but this study is real evidence of the huge potential rewards. Not only can energy-efficiency improvements help protect you against rising energy prices, but they can also add real value to your property.

"The Green Deal is helping more people make these types of home improvements, reducing high upfront costs and letting people pay for some the cost through the savings on their bills."

Grand Designs presenter and sustainable homes expert Kevin McCloud said: "This timely report tells us what we suspected all along: that people really value the well-insulated, energy-efficient home; that modest investment in measures to make our homes more comfortable, healthier and cheaper to run really pays off."

© 2013 Press Association