Investing in residential properties can be a great way to accumulate wealth. But before parting with your cash, an investment strategy needs to be developed. Where should you invest your money? What risks are you willing to take? What ‘green modifications’, yes, ‘green modifications’, may need to be made to the home?
The way a residential building is constructed, insulated, heated, ventilated and the type of fuel used, all contribute to its carbon emissions, and can now seriously impact on the cost of running the property and even its value.
Homeowners and buy-to-let landlords could reap significant competitive advantages by shifting to a ‘green’ model of potentially adding value to a home.
This model uses resources more efficiently and is creating an appetite for innovation in areas like renewable power in the home.
As property buying perceptions change, fresh analysis of 15,623,536 home Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) across the country has been undertaken by Everest to reveal the best and worst rated areas for energy efficiency.
The study found that despite being the most expensive place to buy and rent property, London has the most energy efficient homes, meaning that their occupiers pay the least on bills.
Tower Hamlets, Greenwich and City of London were identified as the three most energy efficient areas in England and Wales with the most A- and B-rated EPCs with energy bills costing just £1,650 on average (in three years).
There has been significant investment in London and Tower Hamlets specifically from local governments.
Despite being one of the most economically disadvantaged areas of the UK, Tower Hamlets has been part of The London Plan and London Climate Change Action Plan striving to ensure that the area has the highest standards of energy efficiency for new build development of any city in the UK. Because of this, Tower Hamlets and areas surrounding the capital have the highest EPC ratings.
When looking outside of London, Dartford in Kent, Uttlesford in Essex, and Basingstoke and Deane in Hampshire are amongst the top 10 best areas with the most top rated EPCs.
Homes with an A- or B-rated EPC spend on average £1,104 on their energy bills over three years. And those that are benefiting from cheaper bills are situated within or near the capital. However, the data shows that just 19,832 dwellings benefit from an A- or B-rated EPC.
Most dwellings have a D rating that has energy costs, on average, of £3,228 across three years.
There are more than 6.1m dwellings in England Wales with an average D-rated EPC. However, the problem lies amongst the lowest rated homes.
Just over 1m dwellings across the country received an F- or G-rated EPC making them the least energy efficient houses in England and Wales.
Those living within these homes are paying on average £5,743.50 for their energy bills across three years – 3.5 times more than those with an A- or B-rated EPC.
Isles of Scilly, Gwynedd, and Ceredigion are the three worst areas.
Some 35% of properties within the Isles of Scilly received an F- or G-rated EPC – the worst grade possible.
Most properties across the west fringes of the country are not suitable for cavity wall insulation due to the fact they are highly exposed to wind and driven rain. This can cause problems with damp and mould in the walls and affecting the health of home owners living in the dwelling.
Everest gathered seven example EPCs across the performance ratings to see the estimated energy costs of a dwelling for three years. The analysis shows there’s a drastic cost difference, between those with a C- and D-rated EPC (52%), and those rated F or G (35%).