Over the past few years, we’ve seen solar energy becoming more and more popular with property buyers across all price brackets and property types in Sydney’s eastern suburbs.

As electricity and gas prices keep rising, homeowners, buyers and renters are all looking for savings on running costs. More than that, they are also increasingly concerned about doing the right thing by the environment which means the green credentials of a home and its sustainability are becoming more important for many house hunters.

So could going solar add value to your property?

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Surveys say solar does add value to a property

A 2015 survey by realestate.com.au and Origin Energy revealed that 85% of Australians thought solar rooftop panels added to a property’s value. And 78% thought a solar hot water system also added value. The survey showed buyers also valued energy efficient appliances, water tanks or water saving fixtures.

But it’s not just buyers who are keen on going green. Seventy-five per cent of renters would also pay additional rent to live in a property with solar energy, the survey found. In fact, two out of five people said they would pay an extra $10 a week in rent for solar energy.

Does this property have solar panels?

While there’s clearly a perception that solar adds value, whether solar panels actually have an impact on the final sale price of a property is up for debate.

What we can confidently say, however, is that they certainly affect buyers’ interest in a property and lift its appeal in the marketplace.

“Does this property have solar panels?” is a question we’re now asked at almost every open home.

This is particularly true where the home being sold is large, has a pool or a modern renovation or substantial air conditioning – all of which tend to lead to higher running costs. However, serious buyers are now often concerned about running costs regardless of whether they’re looking at a prestige property or a smaller, starter home.

So being able to answer “yes” to that question can give a property the edge in terms of buyer perception and marketability, if not the actual sale price.

How much is my property worth

The cost-benefit analysis

According to the Clean Energy Council, by the end of 2018 around 15% of homes in NSW had some solar energy. Across the country, two million homes now have solar.

The Clean Energy Council also says homes with rooftop solar save an average of about $540 every year on their electricity bills.

While there used to be a huge outlay involved in simply buying and installing solar panels, the price of the panels has come down in price a lot over the past decade. The newer systems are also larger, more efficient and more reliable.

According to HiPages, the average cost of a 5kW system in Sydney is just over $5,000 and the payback period is around 4.8 years. These panels should last around 25 years so it’s not hard to see that you could make considerable savings on your power bill.

You’ll need to pay a few thousand more to add a solar battery, but doing so will help reduce your bills even further because you’ll be able to store solar energy captured during the day for use at night, rather than drawing it from the grid.

Our advice

Installing solar can reduce your bills and add to the appeal of your home, particularly you have a large house that’s energy-hungry or a pool filter that’s churning through the Kilowatts. But if you’re thinking of installing a solar system in your home, make sure you do it right.

  • Do your research on how much energy you currently use, and what sized system you’d need to actually make a difference to your power bills.
  • Shop around for a reputable installer who has good reviews.
  • Obtain multiple quotes so you know you’re paying a fair price.
  • Don’t rely on quarterly power bills to know that your system is running well. Check it regularly and follow any maintenance instructions from your installer.

If you want to know more about what buyers are looking for in Sydney’s East contact our team today.

Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs Market Snapshot

A detailed annual assessment of the property market focusing on the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney, Australia.

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