There is a lot to think about when it comes to choosing a new property, but have you ever considered the energy efficiency benefits of buying a new build? If you haven't, here is some food for thought:

Cheaper to run and easier to heat

New build properties contain the latest in energy efficiency technology – think boilers that only heat water when you need it and effective double glazing and insulation. The fact that a new home will be cheaper to run and easier to heat than its older equivalent may not come as a surprise to many, but, as we all spend significantly more time at home and are more cash conscious, this will be more important than ever. As if that wasn't enough, if you buy a new build you won't have the stress or expense of having to replace a faulty boiler or double-glazed windows 2 weeks after you move in. Rather, your boiler and glazing will be brand new and should be covered by warranties.

    Renting a property

    There are added benefits to buying an energy efficient new build property if you are buying with the specific intention of letting the property to tenants, or there is a possibility that you will want to do this in the future. The Energy Efficiency (Domestic Private Rented Property) (Scotland) Regulations 2020 require that privately rented domestic properties meet a minimum standard of energy efficiency before they can be let. Whilst there will be a phased introduction of the minimum requirements, why give yourself extra work and expense when you should be able to meet the requirements straight away just by buying a new build property? If your property doesn’t meet the standards and you let it anyway you will be committing an offence and face a financial penalty. Read more in our blog on the minimum energy efficiency standards for the private rented sector in Scotland

    Gives you time for the fun stuff

    If you decide to buy an old property, there are measures you can take to improve a property's energy efficiency, but these can be costly, time-consuming and of limited effect. You can avoid all of this by choosing a new build home that meets your energy efficiency requirements before you even move in, giving you more time to deal with the enjoyable aspects of moving to a new home.

    Selling a property

    If an energy efficient property is important to you, then you can be sure it will be important to others too. This will matter when it comes to selling. When you decide to sell, you must have an Energy Performance Certificate for the property. This certificate measures the energy efficiency of your home. A new build property will almost certainly have a better energy performance rating than its older equivalent. So, with a greater proportion of us becoming more climate conscious and making efforts to save money on energy bills, a good energy performance rating could really help you sell your home.

    A legally binding obligation

    In December 2019, The Scottish Government launched a consultation on their proposal for a standard for the energy efficiency of a home that would be legally binding on homeowners from 2024. So, in the near future, there could be legal obligations placed on us as homeowners to make sure our properties meet minimum energy efficiency requirements. You could make a good start towards meeting those requirements by buying a new build home.


    Miriam Armstrong

    Managing Associate