Being energy certified means up to 10% more value for your property
The real estate market increasingly values sustainability in buildings. But how to measure your capacity for savings and efficiency? New buyers are willing to pay up to 10% more for properties that can prove their reduced consumption with energy certificates. Insulation is the first step.
It all started on January 4 in 2003, in Europe, with a change that would culminate in the New Green Deal, transforming our energy use towards the year 2050.
On that day, the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD) was launched in line with the famous Kyoto protocol that initiated the sustainability movement. In 2015, it became the Paris Agreement. These were the first global measures agreed upon to initiate a paradigm shift that would affect the energy consumption habits of the global population. Today in 2020, these agreements have been overtaken and improved but it is obvious that they were the precursors of a new style of construction.
The value of energy-efficient buildings
The original 2003 directive was born out of the need to reduce and optimize the energy consumption of existing buildings at the time. According to EU Commission studies, buildings represent 40% of energy consumption and 36% of CO2 emissions in Europe. At present, around 35% of the EU’s buildings are over 50 years old. The improvement of their energy efficiency could mean a 5 to 6% reduction in total energy consumption across the EU and a decrease of approximately 5% in terms of CO2 emissions.
But the most alarming figure is that 75% of current buildings will still be standing and in use in 2050. At the current rate of renovation, it will take approximately a century to eliminate the existing inefficiencies and reduce the production of C02.
Of course, all of this is already known. However, what’s now emerging is that when it comes to rent or sell such buildings, their ‘energy status’ is increasingly affecting their market value. Concepts such as "green value" or "brown discount", depending on the energy status of the building up for sale, are starting to become part of common real estate jargon. The value of properties will depend on their energy efficiency and in the future, it’s likely that we will consider inefficient or unsustainable properties as obsolete, thus decreasing their market value.
More efficiency, more money for your property
Most European countries already have a system of energy certification, allowing them to assess the energy status of both new and existing buildings. The value of the property is basically influenced by two efficiency parameters:
- The more energy-efficient, the lower the operating and maintenance costs.
- The higher the level of certification, the greater the value thanks to the reduced cost of future upgrading (due to regulatory changes, legislation, consumer trends, etc.).
It is estimated that the value of residential buildings with energy certification increases between 3 and 10% compared to those without. For commercial buildings, the premium seems to be higher, between 10 and 20%. In the case of rental prices, these are also positively affected by 2-5%.
This is probably one of the most powerful reasons to renovate existing buildings but, without a doubt, another significant reason will be the increasing global visibility and value of energy certifications, such as BREEAM, LEED, HQE, Passivhaus, Minergie, or DGNB. In the future, these and other certifications will mark the difference between obsolete and standard.
Out of most energy efficiency measures, thermal insulation is probably one of the simplest and fastest to carry out, and it starts to make an immediate difference in a building’s energy consumption. At URSA, we can help and advise you on how to begin the change.
- Big Data
- Building Renovation
- Circular Economy
- Climate change
- CO2 Reduction
- Energy certified
- Energy efficiency
- ESG rating
- Green Deal
- Green Recovery
- Healthy homes
- Human rights
- Mineral wool
- Renovation Wave
- Safe homes
- Safe work
- Solidarity Campaigns
- Thermal insulation
- UN Sustainable Development Goals
- United Nations Global Compact
- We are URSA
- We are Xella
- Xella Group
Protect the climate and stimulate the economy with efficient support programs
At the heart of European climate and energy policy is the creation of structures for a secure, affordable and environmentally compatible energy supply. Given the consequences of the corona pandemic, Europe is also facing massive economic challenges, e.g. rising unemployment, declining economic output, a drastic slump in local business and income tax revenues, cancelled or postponed investments.
The new 55% target for energy efficiency: is it feasible?
Can we reach the new goal of 55% of energy reduction? Of course, we can but we need to set a clear path for local governments to transform goals into executive actions. At Eurima (European Insulation Manufacturers Association) we believe in three main areas key to help all actors to achieve this goal.
Our goal: Safe work
Safety in the workplace is a top priority at URSA as part of Xella Group. That's why we see it as a matter of course to promote the long-term health of our employees and ensure their safety. We want our employees to go home from work every day healthy and unharmed.
#GreenRecovery: Adaptation of Subsidy Programs is Key Now
It is great to see that the German government decided on a green recovery package. It increased the budget for #EnergeticRenovation programs for private and public buildings, and social facilities significantly by 2 billion EUR in 2020 and 2021 totaling each year 2,5 billion EUR to reduce our #CO2emissions.
Big Data and building renovation: out of sight, out of mind
If we use Big Data for almost everything, why not use it for energy efficiency? Right now, we have no real idea of what is going on in Europe´s building stock. Information is key to change things, also in energy efficiency in buildings.
Our goal: A strong team
Our employees form the basis of our long-term success. We want to be an attractive employer in all respects. High-quality training at Xella and investments in our employees' qualifications contribute to this, as do fair, performance-based remuneration, a non-discriminatory working environment, and flexible options for balancing work and family life.
Women in construction
Today, it is still unusual to find women in construction. We would like to stand out one of the exceptions at URSA. Marina explains her work and her daily challenges in an interview in which she claims: "Girls must be empowered to design their future and fight for it"
Our goal: Improving circular economy capabilities
Building materials from Xella consist mainly of natural raw materials and are almost completely recyclable. URSA insulation products are already largely made from reused materials. Therefore, the conversion of value chains to value cycles makes sense for us for ecological and economic reasons. The circular economy is thus a key aspect of our ESG strategy.
Our goal: Reduce CO2 emission intensity by 30% by 2030
URSA will contribute its own efforts to help Xella, the parent group, achieve its ambitious environmental goals aligned with the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda.
URSA joins Xella Group in supporting UN Sustainable Development Goals
With our business model, we have a high level of positive impact opportunities. To actively leverage this, we sharpened our ESG focus as part of the review of our Sustainability Strategy 2020 and worked out how our strategy can contribute to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In this core vision, URSA has joined as well to work towards progress and sustainability together and better.
Acting responsibly: Xella joined UN Global Compact
Xella Group has joined the world's largest and most important initiative for responsible corporate governance: The United Nations Global Compact. Xella is committed to the ten sustainable principles in the areas of human rights, labor standards, the environment, and corruption prevention.
Our grain of sand to a Net Zero society
Xella has started an ambitious ESG journey and URSA has jumped on this train. Among our commitments, URSA MW insulation solutions will incorporate up to 80 % recycled materials in their manufacturing, besides other concrete and tangible objectives for occupational safety, diversity, and corporate social responsibility.
The first step towards insulation: mineral wool
Good insulation provides comfort, safety and sustainability for the home. Glass mineral wool solutions offer thermal and acoustic comfort, directly contributing to the reduction of CO2 emissions in the European Union.
Dialog with our stakeholders and our essential sustainability topics
Our mission is to enable energy-efficient and long-lasting housing – and to provide as sustainably as possible. To achieve this goal and keep improving, we are in constant exchange with our stakeholders.
Solidarity goes beyond borders
At this important time, we want to promote the value of solidarity by sharing the different initiatives carried out by the different URSA regions with the aim of preserving the basic needs of people and contributing to a decent life.
Sustainability at Xella: Best in Class in our industry
The reputable ESG rating agency Sustainalytics has given Xella a rating of 18.3, putting Xella in first place out of all 115 companies in the building materials sector assessed by Sustainalytics. Sustainalytics therefore classifies the risk of financial impact caused by ESG aspects at Xella as low.
Healthy Buildings for Unhealthy Times: Why Renovate Europe should lead the post-COVID-19 era
It has been shown that the condition of buildings can impact the health of the people who inhabit them. Good insulation or adequate ventilation not only reduces the risks of contracting diseases but is also beneficial for people’s mental health. What should Europe do about it?
Energy efficient and affordable housing – delivered sustainably
URSA, as part of Xella Group, stands for innovative, safe and sustainable building and insulation materials and is the solution provider for energy-efficient, healthy and cost-optimized construction. Thus, our product portfolio contributes to decarbonization and to a low-carbon construction sector.
Making open plan offices work – insulation, the critical ingredient
Open spaces have been a growing trend since 1990. But they are not always the most suitable option depending on where you are in the world. The sustainability, comfort and profitability of a business space or open space home will depend on insulation, climate and location.
Does the circular economy help minimize the environmental effects of the construction industry?
Applying the principle of the circular economy to construction materials and the renovation of buildings offers benefits not only for the sector but for society in general. The architect must be a fundamental part of this change in the way the world thinks.