Homes With Eco-friendly Features Selling For Higher Prices


Eco Friendly Home
  • Eco-friendly features such as solar panels, battery packs and rainwater tanks are making homes more attractive for property seekers.
  • New research shows that people are willing to pay up to 10% more for a sustainable home.
  • According to Finder.com.au, 33% of buyers are happy to pay more for a property with solar panels.
  • New build owners are also wanting to install sustainable features because solar panels and batteries are more affordable.
  • People have more peace of mind with a battery and solar panels because they’re paying very little for power.

Property seekers are willing to pay more money for a sustainable home, according to new research by property group PRDnationwide. Homes with eco-friendly features such as, solar panels, battery packs and rainwater tanks, are likely to sell for 10% higher, and also around 13 days faster, than homes without these features.

Things like solar panels may add more value to a home but it appears, with electricity prices on the rise, home buyers are thinking long term in terms of their utility bill savings.

“People realise that they can save money on energy bills or electricity, which is alluring when bills keep going up, so people think ‘if I have to pay more now I will come out on top in the long run,’” says PRD nationwide national research manager Diaswati Mardiasmo.

Further research by Finder.com.au backs this up by reporting that 33% of buyers are happy to pay more for a property with solar panels.

A development company, Metricon, who has partnered with a number of smart energy suppliers, has also noticed an uptake in new build owners wanting to install sustainable features. Part of the reason is that the price of solar panels and batteries is more affordable than in the past. Return on investment also currently takes around 3-4 years whereas it used to take 8-9 years.

General manager of Metricon Homes NSW Luke Fryer said that “Since October last year over 70% of our Designer and Signature by Metricon customers have chosen to build smart technology into their homes.”

Technologies on offer, such as the Bradford ChargePack, which comes with solar panels, and the Tesla Powerwall which stores power, were significantly easing homeowners’ worries about their power bills.

“We find that people have (more) peace of mind with a battery and solar panels, particularly as 80 to 90 per cent of their energy bills are offset by the sun, meaning they pay very little on power,” said Bradford Energy business manager Ashleigh O’Brien.

Smart apps can also show families how much energy they’re using and how much power they have left in their battery. “This allows them to use the air conditioner or dryer without bill shock or worrying about the cost down the track,” said Ms O’Brien.

Source: Queensland Times


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Understanding Batteries

Off-Grid Systems

For some households a battery system can be of great benefit and minimise a home’s reliance on the grid. However, it’s important to understand for a battery to be useful your solar system needs to be generating excess energy for the battery to store, which you can then use at night or when the sun is not out.

When selecting a battery, you’ll want to invest in a system that is most suited to your home and can drive the best return on investment (ROI). Despite a larger upfront cost, a higher quality battery may significantly increase your ROI.

    Battery systems start from $6,000 and costs can vary greatly based on the following factors:

  1. Cycle Life-Time

    The number of times a battery can fully charge and discharge.

  2. Battery Power (kW)

    How fast it can be charged or discharged.

  3. Storage Capacity (kWh)

    The maximum amount of energy a battery system can store.

  4. Battery Management System (BMS)

    An electronic ‘smart’ system that gathers data and manages the battery ensuring it does not overload or operate outside of its safe functioning zone..

  5. Inverter

    Battery systems require their own inverter if your solar system does not have a hybrid inverter.

  6. 'All-In-One Unit’

    A system which includes the battery, BMS and an inverter all in one unit.

  7. Warranty

    Length of time or cycles the battery system is under guarantee.

  8. Blackout Protection/Backup

    It’s important to note this is not a common feature of a battery system and could cost thousands of dollars to include. Blackout protection not only requires additional components but also a specialised installation and rewiring. For grid-connected homes, the cost for blackout protection can outweigh the benefit.

Additionally, if your purpose for adding battery is to go Off-Grid and become completely independent from the grid you will need to ensure your solar system can generate enough energy to power your home and your battery system is large enough to store this energy. For homes in metro areas going Off-grid is not cost effective and is only recommended for those in remote areas with limited access to the grid. Off-grid solar systems with battery start at approximately $30,000.

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