Vendors of new and established homes will finally be able to showcase their homes’ running costs and comforts through a new checklist of features added to listings. The assessment evaluates energy features including ventilation, solar panels, shading insulation and water efficiency.
Until recently, property marketing has typically targeted the brand new kitchen, refurbished bathrooms, new floorboards, fresh paint jobs, bascially anything that is visually pleasing. But what about everything that goes on behind the scenes that also adds significant value to the home?
Over 1.7 Million Solar Panels in Australia
According to the CSIRO, there are more than 1.7 million solar panels across Australia. This is a significant investment for home owners to make and one of the 17 Liveability Features that will appear on the new checklist.
Initial Insulation Cost Yields Ongoing Energy Savings
Roof insulation is another investment that often goes unnoticed, and yet will have a significant impact on the budget of the people living there. If renters knew that they would be faced with high energy bills because the house was under-insulated, for example, they may think twice before signing any contracts. Conversely, a high level of ceiling insulation may attract a tenant who is looking to cut living costs.
An Opportunity for Sellers to Showcase Their Efforts
Many home owners invest a significant amount of money into non-visible home improvements that yield returns year after year and now it appears that they will have their chance to tell their audience of prospective buyers.
The new liveability checklist will now be added to properties for sale and will give sellers the opportunity to highlight investments they have made which have improved the energy efficiency of the home and which the end buyer will benefit from.
Real Estate Agents Trained to Look for Best Selling Points
Avalon resident Cecille Weldon has designed a training program for real estate agents that enables them to conduct a property appraisal that includes the Liveability Features which meet national benchmarks and are supported by the CSIRO. Accredited agents will then be skilled at identifying and advertising the energy efficiency of properties for sale that increase comfort and reduce running costs. The program has won a national award.
Helping Home owners, Buyers and Renters
For sellers, the assessment can help them highlight the energy efficiency of their home and recompense them for work they have done to reduce carbon emissions and reduce utility costs. For buyers and renters, the evaluation gives them an accurate snapshot of how much their prospective home might cost to run and what has been done to reduce energy consumption.
Incorporating Passive Design for Increased Energy Efficiency
Other selling points will include the use of passive design, such as cross ventilation and shading insulation. The appraisal will include an estimate of how expensive or cheap the running costs will be in all the seasons. All of a sudden, there is a real financial incentive to strategically plant deciduous trees, build verandas and install good quality curtains and shutters. Homes with at least six energy reducing features will be rewarded with extra credits which can be used to help advertise a property.