How can you cost-efficiently make your properties more sustainable

February 14, 2022

The sustainability of a property is becoming an increasing priority for buyers, sellers and tenants.

A poor energy rating can have a significant impact on a house’s appeal and resale value, which is why more investors are looking at ways to make their properties greener.

What makes a property sustainable?

By raising the sustainably of your property, you can increase its value and save on energy bills.

There are a number of ways to increase energy efficiency and make a building more sustainable – ranging from the materials used in its construction to the type of bulbs fitted in light sockets.

For older properties, it’s a case of improving what you have. This may mean better windows, a newer boiler and additional insulation.

If you’re starting from scratch, you can consider the building materials and methods used in construction and the choices you make regarding heating and ventilation.

Increasingly, smart systems are helping to integrate air-conditioning, heating, water, lighting and ventilation. This combined approach allows you to control and manage your overall energy consumption.

Install renewable heating systems

The traditional gas boiler is gradually becoming obsolete as it’s replaced by renewable heating alternatives such as air source heat pumps and solar panels. Investment in these renewable energy systems is a way of futureproofing your heating system. However, they’re a long-term investment.

Solar power panels will significantly cut your carbon and greenhouse gas emissions and provide you with your own energy source. But the average price for a set of solar panels is between £2500 to £8000, so it will take some years to recoup your outlay.

Fit energy-efficient windows

In the average home, windows account for more than 50 percent of lost energy.

New energy-efficient double-glazing uses coated, low-emissivity glass to prevent heat from escaping through windows and doors. Older types of double-glazed units aren’t made from low-emissivity glass and don’t offer the same degree of insulation.

Most double-glazed units have two sheets of glass with a gap of about 16mm that forms an insulating barrier and is sometimes filled with gas. These units offer thermally insulating properties to keep cold out and warmth in.

However, new technology double-glazing with special coatings, nonconductive framing materials and higher-quality, air-tight construction provides a significantly higher level of energy efficiency.

Increase wall and roof insulation

In the average home, insulation can account for up to 40 percent of heat loss.

Whether you have an old property or new build, increasing your loft insulation is an inexpensive way to boost your energy rating and cut your fuel bills. For older properties, cavity wall insulation is another cheap and effective way to reduce energy loss.

Houses built in the last twenty years generally already have wall insulation. If your house is older than twenty years, it’s worth getting the walls checked to see if they’re insulated. It’s a simple matter for a registered installer to drill a small hole in your external wall to determine if it’s hollow or filled.

Use energy-efficient bulbs

Energy-efficient bulbs make a considerable difference to energy output. They also last up to 10 times longer than traditional bulbs. Some LED lamps give up to 40,000 hours of use.

Nowadays, LED bulbs come in various brightness levels and colours and provide the same light quality as traditional bulbs. With a vast range of shapes and sizes of LEDs now available, it’s a simple matter to replace every traditional bulb in your property with a more energy-efficient one.

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