Scotland, the UK, and various other European countries have started to take measures to increase the energy efficiency of the homes in their respective territories. As climate change is one of the most immediate problems we need to tackle as a society, governments, including those in Scotland, have started implementing new energy efficiency laws.
There are quite a few new energy efficiency measures in place right now in Scotland, and they have a large ripple effect on the whole country. But how do these energy-efficiency laws and measures affect your property?
The new energy efficiency laws in Scotland will affect how you sell, rent out, and even manage your property. On top of that, they will also affect the value of your property, which is why all property owners and investors are paying a very close eye on the matter.
So, if you’re wondering what Scotland’s energy efficiency laws mean for your property, keep on reading until the end. The information you’ll read in this article is relevant for both private homeowners as well as investors.
An Overview of the Energy Efficiency Measures Scotland Has Taken
Scotland is taking a proactive and forward-thinking approach to energy efficiency. This includes a long list of standards, which are designed to directly influence social and private housing.
One of the most significant of these standards is the standard for heating. Currently, an estimated 89% of Scottish homes are heated with fossil fuels, which is a big contributor to climate change. To combat these inefficient systems, Scotland introduced legislation that requires all homes to have energy-efficient heating systems installed by 2045.
This means that by 2045, there should be no Scottish homes using old-school fossil-fueled heating systems. Instead, they will be using more efficient measures such as heat pumps, which consume much less fuel and have a better overall effect on the environment.
On top of that, all new homes in Scotland from 2024 onwards will require an efficient heating system when applying for a building warrant. This means that all new homes that people build in Scotland after 2024 will contain energy-efficient heating systems.
This is a great measure with a huge potential to lower greenhouse gases in Scotland while also boosting the overall energy efficiency of the housing sector. However, simply changing your heating system isn’t enough to fully turn your home into an efficient one. If you want to increase efficiency, you will have to upgrade your appliances and even make some changes to your lifestyle.
To get a better idea of how efficient or inefficient a house is, Scotland’s government introduced EPC ratings. These are in-depth calculations that consider your home’s construction, existing appliances, consumption, and other factors to determine how much power you consume and the size of your carbon footprint.
There are two EPCs, one for domestic homes and one for commercial and non-domestic homes. Calculating the EPC of these two structure types is very different. However, it’s best for Scottish homeowners to keep in mind that the better the EPC rating of their home, the more energy efficient their property is, which is a good thing.
What Is the Minimum EPC Rating for a Property in Scotland?
There are numerous rules that landlords and property investors have to follow when entering the market in Scotland. For example, landlords with buy-to-let properties must ensure that they have an EPC of “D” or higher. Despite the fact that “D” is one of the lowest EPC ratings, it still shows that the homeowner is making an effort to reduce the energy consumption of their property.
With that said, EPC ratings that are higher such as “A’, “B”, or “C”, are much more desirable. In fact, it will be much easier to find potential tenants and increase the value of your home when you have a higher EPC rating.
Currently, land owners that want to sell their house or property must also have an EPC of “D”. There are proposals that aim to raise the minimum rating to a “C” by 2025. That way, property owners must take even further measures and make their property more energy-efficient.
Does Energy Rating Affect Housing Price?
The short answer is yes. The higher a home’s energy rating, the higher the potential value of the property will be when you sell it on the Scottish property market. Again, the research shows that homes with a higher EPC rating tend to fetch over 13% more on the property market compared to homes with a lower EPC rating.
So, if you’re looking to sell your house fast in Scotland and want to get the highest possible price, it’s a good idea to invest some money and make your property as energy efficient as possible. There are many ways to do this, and it’s always best to take a multi-faceted approach to have the biggest impact.
Will the Energy Efficiency Measures Increase the Value of My Property?
Based on recent data, there’s a positive correlation between a home’s energy performance rating and its value on the property market. Studies show that most properties with high energy efficiency ratings simply sell for more than their less energy-efficient counterparts. So, if you have a home in Scotland that you’re looking to keep as an investment, you should definitely start looking at ways to increase your EPC rating.
To calculate a home’s EPC, an independent auditor must audit your home’s energy consumption, appliances, quality of construction, insulation, and similar. From there, they will be able to determine how efficient or inefficient your home is.
To give you an idea of the impact on the value of your property your EPC rating will have, homes with a higher EPC sell for an average of 13% more than those with a lower EPC rating. If your home is currently worth £200,000, making it more energy efficient can bump up its price by an average of £26,000
Like the government in most countries in Europe, the Scottish government is also starting to take drastic measures to make social and private housing as energy efficient as possible. In Scotland, in particular, having a high energy efficiency will soon mean that your property will be worth more, and it will generate more interest from potential tenants.
As for properties with a low EPC rating, the owners of those will have to make sure that their properties are at least “D” rated, or else, they’ll plummet in value.