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Is it worth making eco improvements before I sell?

May 16, 2022

Improving a property so it produces less carbon and lower fuel bills makes perfect sense but what about the return on investment? Unless you stick to low-outlay changes, such as LED light bulbs and thermal curtains, there will be a significant spend involved in creating an energy efficient home.

The most impactful eco improvements are often the most pricey to purchase and install, therefore a common point of resistance is the time it takes to recoup the cost of the investment, especially among those who are hoping to move home in the near future.

There is, however, growing evidence to suggest that ensuring a property is as energy efficient as possible before it is sold repays the owner in a number of ways. 

Let’s start with how many pounds eco improvements can add to a property’s value with this list compiled by Rated People:- 

  1.     Solar panels – £13,512 (value increase)
  2.     Wind turbine – £12,941
  3.     Triple glazing – £12,788
  4.     Underfloor heating – £12,290
  5.     Ground source heat pump – £12,251
  6.     Double glazing – £12,005
  7.     Extra insulation, like cavity wall insulation – £11,764
  8.     Biomass boiler – £11,756
  9.     Air source heat pump – £11,670
  10. Solar water heating – £11,646
  11. Electric car charging point – £11,538
  12. Green/living roof – £11,477
  13. Biodiverse garden – £11,444
  14. Old appliances replaced with new ones – £11,190
  15. Draught proofing – £11,151

If you’re hoping to make your home more valuable before you sell, it’s worth paying attention to the cost of making any improvement versus how much value it will add.

As an illustration, you could buy and install an electric vehicle charging point and still add £10,000 in value, even after costs are deducted. The average electric vehicle charging point costs between £800-£1,100 to buy and install but it adds an estimated £11,538 to a home’s value.

Flat owners can be even more financially astute as they are eligible to apply for the Government’s new ChargePoint grant, which offers a 75% discount on the cost of purchasing and installing an electric vehicle charging point, up to the value of £350.

It’s a similar story for air source heat pumps, which cost in the region of £10,000 to purchase and install. This figure can be reduced by £5,000 for those using the Government’s Boiler Upgrade Scheme, while 20% off the pump’s purchase price can be secured if the pump is bought in the next five years as there’s zero VAT on energy efficient materials. When you consider an air source heat pump can add £11,670  in value, the investment looks enticing as long as the Government’s discount schemes are utilised. 

Attract buyers willing to offer more

As well as adding value to a property, eco improvements can also ensure your home attracts the most attention on the sales market and even compel purchasers to make higher offers. In fact, the results of a study by the Halifax found the most energy efficient homes can sell for up to £40,000 more than their less eco-friendly counterparts.

Another survey of 1,730 prospective homebuyers by Redrow found 82% of those questioned said they would be willing to pay more for a sustainable home, while 38% said they intended to buy a property with features such as thermal wall insulation, efficient boilers and renewable energy supplies. 

EPCs: an outward sign of how eco-friendly your home is

If your home doesn’t have an EPC or your existing certificate has expired (they’re only valid for 10 years), you’ll need an energy assessor to issue a report as displaying a property’s EPC rating is a legal requirement when selling. Buyers are increasingly paying attention to energy efficiency, so ensuring your home has the highest EPC grade possible before going on the market is a good idea. 

If you would like to know what your current home is worth and how that figure could be elevated with eco improvements, contact us for advice.

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