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Does your home's energy efficiency influence its price and salability?

Posted by Gabby Mallett on 14 December 2015 at 12:30 pm

It’s difficult to know how much energy efficiency measures or renewable energy technologies make a difference to the sale price of your home.  There is some evidence that better insulated homes or those with renewables can command more in an open market, but the facts aren’t clear as often these properties are the best looked after and therefore it may be other factors that increase the cost.

However, new evidence has emerged which shows that energy efficiency does have a bearing on the salability of your home and the price you are offered.  SellingUp a UK website which helps you through the sales process has recently commissioned an exclusive survey with Populus, one of the UK’s leading market research firms, to look into some of the lesser known reasons that potential buyers may be put off entirely, or encouraged to make a reduced offer.

Yes, you’ve guessed it, topping bad taste or out of date kitchens and bathrooms, the one factor which is most likely to result in a reduced offer price is a poor energy efficiency rating.  The survey suggests that buyers are getting much more savvy where energy efficiency is concerned.  More than a third of respondents (36%) said they would cut thousands of pounds from their offer price for a poor energy efficiency rating and a further 23% would reduce their offer by hundreds of pounds. That’s a whopping 59%, ready to reduce their offer to you if your property is badly insulated.

In fact 16% of respondents said they would withdraw an offer altogether if the property had a poor energy efficiency rating, and that is the same percentage as those who would withdraw if they found out that someone had died in the property.

The table above does make interesting reading.  Many of the issues mentioned here are beyond your control.  You certainly can’t do much about the embarrassing street name or living next door to a cemetery.  What you can do something about is improving your home’s energy efficiency.  And with Energy Performance Certificates being a mandatory requirement of every sale, you can’t even hide your lack of energy saving home improvements.

Don’t despair.  There are many sensible, easy and reasonably cheap things that you can do to start improving your home in this way.  Firstly look at the obvious, is energy (and heat) being wasted.  Start with draught proofing, check your loft insulation and find out about cavity wall insulation (if you have cavities).  Check that valuable heated air isn’t escaping up old chimneys (you can block these with chimney balloons), switch older lighting for LEDs. Once you have done these simple things you can begin to look at the more expensive options, but if you are selling you may need to weigh up the cost of the measures with the additional benefit on the salability and that, as I said above, is a difficult one to call.

Survey demographics

Total respondents: 1084

Gender: Male = 528; female = 556.

Age: 18-24 = 126; 25-34 = 188; 35-44 = 178; 45-54 = 193; 55-64 = 156;  65+ = 243.

Location: Scotland = 91; North East =44; North West = 121; Yorkshire and Humberside = 89; West Midlands = 95; East Midlands = 78; Wales = 54; Eastern = 102; London = 139; South East = 147; South West = 93; Northern Ireland = 32.

Social grade: AB = 292;  C1 = 292; C2 = 236; DE = 264.

Home ownership: Owned outright without mortgage = 357; Owned with a mortgage or loan = 335; Rented from the council = 160; Rented from a housing association = 78; Rented from someone else = 141; Rent free = 13.


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