Property Blog and News / Eco features to look out for in new build properties

Eco features to look out for in new build properties

18 December 2023


Natasha Afxentiou
Senior PR & Content Executive

In an effort to make our homes more sustainable, the government has set the Future Homes Standard which will be introduced by 2025. 

The aim of the Future Homes standard is to make sure new build homes are “future-proofed” with low carbon heating and greater energy efficiency to benefit not only the environment, but to also make properties more affordable to run. 

By integrating low carbon technologies, the government expects new homes that are built to the Future Homes Standard to have at least 75% less carbon dioxide emissions compared to homes built to the current Building Regulations standards.  

As part of the goal for new homes to meet these new standards by 2025, more and more efficient features are being included in new build properties. 

In episode three of our home moving podcast, OnTheMove, Ed McCoy, Group Sales Director at Persimmon Homes, outlined the specific things they often include within their properties to make them more energy efficient and encourage more sustainable lifestyle choices such as solar panels and  electric charging points. The episode also dives into the detail of what you need to know about buying a new build and can be listened to here.  

The features put in place by developers on each new build development will vary case by case, but below we’re outlining just a few to have on your radar when searching for and viewing new build homes. 

A good EPC rating 

An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) ranks a home’s energy efficiency on a scale of A (most efficient) to G (least efficient). Properties with a good EPC rating are likely to be more efficient than homes with a lower rating, and as part of the overall goal to make new build homes more future-proof, they should ideally have a very good EPC rating so make sure to keep a lookout for this when looking at the details of a new build. 

Double or triple glazed windows 

Conserving as much warmth as possible can help with reducing the amount you need to heat your home, and as a result, reduce your heating bill. Double or triple glazed windows are great for improving energy efficiency and can help with reducing possible draughts. 

Energy efficient appliances and energy saving light bulbs 

If the new build property you’re interested in comes with integrated appliances, it’s worth asking the developer if they’re energy efficient. These appliances can reduce your emissions and water usage and can cost less to run, making them a worthwhile investment for the planet and your pocket. In addition, energy saving light bulbs are a great option for cutting down electricity bills too. 

Improved insulation 

It can sometimes be the case that older homes tend to lose more heat because of poor insulation, resulting in them being less efficient when it comes to retaining warmth. 

Having greater insulation in the walls, floor and roof of a home can significantly improve its efficiency and is a common feature among many new build properties.

Insulation can vary depending on how a home is constructed so speak to your developer about the materials and level of insulation they’ve used, but ultimately, improved insulation can make a big difference.  

Ground source heat pumps 

Ground source heat pumps are a good option for integrating a more efficient heating system as they can reduce carbon emissions as well as your fuel bills over time. 

This clever technology is powered by electricity and works by transferring natural heat from the ground to warm your home and provide hot water, and they’re generally more efficient and cheaper to run in the long term. 

It’s also a common perception that ground source heat pumps require larger radiators and pipes, however this very much depends on factors like room sizes and how well insulated a property is, but they can often work with a variety of different radiators. 

Sustainable materials 

As well as considering how efficient a home is to run, it’s also worth thinking about the sustainability of the materials used to build the property, as many developers are using more sustainable materials to construct new build homes. 

Materials will vary across developments, so it’s worth having a chat with your developer to find out more about the sustainable choices they may have made. 

Wastewater recovery systems 

Some new build properties use wastewater recovery systems which ensure that wastewater from the shower heats the incoming cold water as it goes up the pipes, meaning the boiler doesn’t have to work as hard. This helps to make properties more efficient when it comes to their energy usage and wastewater.

Dual flush toilets are also a good way of reducing water waste as they typically use much less water when compared to standard flush toilets.

In the long run, living in a home which is more energy efficient can save you money on your bills and can have less impact on the environment, so it’s worth having a few features on your radar to have a better understanding of the homes you’re viewing.