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Should homes be sold with energy bills on display?

Include energy costs in home sales to boost efficiency, says EST

For sale sign

A home’s annual energy bill should be displayed alongside the price of the property when the house is put up for sale, according to the Energy Saving Trust (EST).

The EST’s chief operating officer, Fraser Winterbottom, likened the information to showing miles per gallon on the fuel efficiency of cars.

It believes that including energy bill details in the home buying process would give energy efficiency a bigger part in the negotiation process between buyer and seller – and make the most efficient homes more attractive to potential buyers. 

This could encourage sellers to make efficiency improvements before putting their home on the market.

Energy performance certificate ‘not enough’

Homes currently on the market are required to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) in place – which gives an energy rating to the property, similar to the familiar A to G energy efficiency rating found on new household appliances. 

An ‘A’ rating indicates that the house is energy efficient, whereas ‘G’ shows that the house is very inefficient. You can find out more about what information the EPC provides – and how to arrange one if you’re selling a property – in our energy performance certificates explained guide. 

However the EST believes that showing the home’s actual energy bill, rather than just giving it an A-G rating, would be more meaningful to prospective buyers, who could then compare the difference between the annual running costs of comparable-sized houses.

The average home energy rating in the UK is’ D’, with newer homes tending to be more efficient than older ones.

Attract buyers by improving your home’s efficiency

According to the EST, 50% of UK homeowners think that homes with greener features are easier to sell in the current property market.

Even if you’re not planning to sell, improving your home’s energy efficiency can help you to cut your energy costs. Our guide to creating a sustainable home has some useful tips to help you get started.

We’ve also pulled together a collection of energy efficient Best Buy appliances to help you save money – so if you’re buying a new washing machine, dishwasher or fridge freezer, choosing one of our recommended models can save energy, reduce your electricity bills and cut your carbon footprint.

Lower your gas and electricity bills

You can compare energy prices and switch to a new gas and electricity supplier on Which? Switch. People who switched with us between 1 October and 31 December 2013 are predicted to save an average of £234 a year on their bills.

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