As energy bills continue to rise, more and more buyers want to do a little known energy audit before buying a home to save thousands.
The country is set for an eye-watering rise in energy bills – in April costs could rise to an average of £6,089 a year.
If you’re looking to get on the property ladder, make sure the home you’re looking at is energy efficient.
By choosing a green home as opposed to one that requires a lot of home improvements, you can save an average of 52% on your annual energy bill, Zopla says.
To do this, buyers should check the property’s Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating, says Nick Morey, technical director at mortgage company Corco.
He says this ranks how efficient they are from A (best) to G (worst).
In it will be ideas for green improvements to the home – which will save money on your bills in the long run, says Nick.
You may already be familiar with this report – but make sure you don’t see too much paperwork to wade through the buying process.
“As the cost of living continues to rise across the globe with wholesale energy prices, take a good look at the EPC report to see how energy efficient a property is and how it can reduce those costs,” he said.
Nick is one of the experts on our Squeeze Team panel – here to help you manage the cost of living.
If you’re worried about how to make ends meet, are struggling to pay off your debt or don’t know how to better manage your money, email Squeezeteam@thesun.co.uk.
What is an EPC report?
Since 2008, every house rented, sold or bought has an EPC, which is entered into a report.
It takes into account things like double glazing, draft proofing and attic insulation.
Homes with a rating of D or below appear to be less efficient and use more energy, which means higher bills.
Recent analysis by The Sun found that 9.7 million homes have an EPC rating of D or below – around 57.3% in England and Wales.
Every house for sale must now have an EPC rating, and these are often included in the listing so you can check before you view.
How much can you save?
Looking at this report could save you thousands in the long run, says Nick.
“The report itself will have recommendations and the potential impact of the changes on the energy efficiency of the property,” he said.
Some recommended changes can be very expensive – such as adding solar panels or a new gas boiler or double glazing – but others are not, such as replacing old light bulbs with new efficient ones or installing attic insulation.
Just making a few small changes doesn’t mean you need to destroy a load of clay – but it could save you hundreds.
You can buy a 100mm thick roll of insulation for around eight meters for £20 – you’ll normally need three rolls to really notice the difference.
It can save you up to £300 a year on your energy bill.
Checking your home draft can save you money — and it won’t cost you a dime.
Putting cling film on your windows can save you £10 a month, stuffing old towels or socks over doors to keep cold air out can save you £30 a year.
If you think your home’s running costs are going to be too high – or it may cost more than you’re willing to pay to make it more efficient – then you might want to reconsider a deal.
“Doing the right research now can save you hundreds of pounds a year,” says Nick.
Another realtor lists four of the most common questions buyers ask.
Here are some other top tips from the pros for selling your home.