Property developers in both the buy-to-sell and buy-to-let markets are making a definite move towards implementing more eco-friendly measures in their buildings. The overarching aim is to build houses which are better insulated, aredouble or triple glazed, offer alternative forms of energy such as solar panels and have installed, as standard, water efficient fixtures and fittings. This is good news for the environment and for the buyer or tenant, but what is motivating this change?
The Prospect of a Faster Sale
Green homes are becoming increasingly sought after in today’s property market. Therefore,a key reason developers are building more sustainable accommodation is because they know they are able to sell their property much faster than if it wasn’t eco-friendly.
The change is also partly being forced on them by increasing levels of environmental legislation whose aim is to drive down carbon emissions and to preserve natural resources. The Energy Act in particular has had a big impact as it calls for homes to be much more energy efficient and to offer greater access to low-carbon and alternative forms of energy.
What Makes a Green Home So Appealing?
We know that green homes are more attractive to buyers but why are people turning to them in increasing numbers?
Everyone is now much more aware of issues of climate change, carbon emission and pollution. Whereas we can all make relatively small everyday changes, such as recycling and using the car less, when it comes to buying a new home it gives us the opportunity to make a much bigger impact. Buyers are now therefore more interested in where materials have been sourced, how well insulated the building is and what the overall carbon footprint isof the home.
Lower Utility Bills
Another big plus for the homeowner of a sustainable building is the reduction in their utility bills. Less heat lost through walls and windows; low energy lighting; and better heating methods all lead to lower energy bills. Water efficiency is another area where money can be saved. A sustainable house will come equipped with low flow shower heads, aerated taps, reduced capacity baths and dual flush toilets, all of which drastically reduce water usage for a family over the course of a year.
Homes That Make Money
Some green homes will be supplied by alternative forms of energy, such as solar panels. The advantage to these are that not only do they provide enough energy for your own personal needs but you can also earn money by selling additional energy back to the national grid. With energy prices currently so high, this is a big boon for any family’s budget.
This move towards green homes is also partly down to the fact that people are now much more aware of what is on offer. TV programmes such as ‘Grand Designs’ and ‘The £100k House’ have made buyers realise that living in a green home is not out of their grasp even if they possess a relatively restricted budget.
How quickly a house sells has always been influenced by its location; whether it falls in the catchment area of a good school; its proximity to local amenities; andaccess topublic transport links. These things all remain important, but how sustainable a house is has now been added to the list.
It is not likely that a desire for sustainable living will abate soon, especially with the increased scarcity of natural resources and rising concerns over global warming.
This is a trend that property developers are taking a great deal of notice of. The bottom line is it is good for business if they can provide houses we all want to buy.
Helen Wallis, the author of this article, is a keen blogger with a passion for
everything green. By sharing her thoughts and experiences, she hopes
to make the world a more beautiful place for everyone.
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