Improving Energy Efficiency in Spain

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Keeping down electricity bills is a common preoccupation for home owners in Spain, but of course reducing energy use is also good for the environment. Spain has recently brought in a requirement for homes for sale or rent to have a certificate demonstrating how energy efficient a property is to enable potential buyers or tenants to be able to judge the energy efficiency of different properties prior to making their decision.

The only buildings exempt from this requirement are buildings with floor area less than 50m2 or buildings used for less than four months a year or less than 25% of yearly consumption. In order to get a certificate you will provide information about the owner and property, an on-site energy audit conducted by a certified technician who will calculate its energy efficiency and generate a report which will identify weaknesses and also make recommendations for possible improvements. This must then be validated by the local administration for use over a 10 year period. If you sell or rent your property without advertising the energy efficiency certificate you are liable for fines, or it could potentially invalidate the sale or lease.  To find out more about these certificates, check out this useful article on Spanish Property Insight. We are able to arrange an energy certificate for your home, please contact us for details.

Here are a few handy tips for improving your home’s energy efficiency –

Insulate and plug the leaks – Improve the seals on windows and doors and ensure that the insulation in your home is sufficient.

Check the efficiency of boilers and air-conditioning units – Newer units have better energy efficiency credentials and there are some systems which are so superior in terms of energy efficiency they can quickly repay the investment.

Check the temperature on your water heater – Experts recommend no more than 120 degrees as heating it more than that is very expensive and make sure the pipes are properly insulated.  Electric water heaters are an expensive option, air source heat pumps and solar hot water systems are highly effective alternatives.

Check high energy appliances – The fridge/freezer, washing machine and dishwasher are by far the most energy hungry devices and are worth replacing for energy efficient models. If money doesn’t allow replacement, limit their use as much as possible.

What are the alternatives? – Look at renewable energy sources and see if there’s any you can usefully utilise in your home.

Please let us know if you have any more handy hints. For more information take a look at this useful post on energy efficiency 

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