In the Midst of the Cost of Living Crisis, Property Hunters Seek Energy Efficient Homes


The majority of buyers are prioritising energy efficiency in their property search, a new survey from property portal Share to Buy has revealed. The recent report of over 2,600 first time buyers on identifies a growing nationwide shift towards greener, more eco-friendly homes, with 72% of house hunters revealing that a home with a high energy efficiency rating is important to them.

The survey paints a vivid picture of the first time buyer landscape at the start of 2024. Underpinning the move towards more efficient homes is a concern about monthly costs and affordability – since February 2022, energy prices have soared, and many have seen their monthly energy costs double.* A significant 79% of survey respondents reported that the current cost of living crisis has reduced the amount of money they are able to save for a deposit each month, while 65% of those surveyed said that the cost of living crisis is actually delaying them buying a home.

The survey has been conducted by leading first time buyer property portal Share to Buy, home to the largest listing of properties available through Shared Ownership and other affordable housing schemes in the UK. The majority of properties listed on the portal are new-build homes, many of which are fitted with a wide range of eco-features, from modern insulation and solar panels to air source heat pumps.

Nick Lieb, Chief Operations Officer at Share to Buy, comments: “It’s no surprise that the current cost of living crisis is impacting people’s property search – from buying timelines to property must-haves, first time buyers are being forced to try and cut costs wherever they can. New homes mean modern building regulations, double glazed windows, better insulation and energy-efficient boilers, resulting in more sustainable properties and, ultimately, lower monthly costs for buyers.”

“Based on the results of our survey, affordable homeownership options, such as Shared Ownership, are critical in the current economic climate. By offering both greener homes and lower deposits, Shared Ownership can fundamentally help first time buyers who are currently priced out of the open market reduce all-important costs and finally step onto the property ladder.”

Shared Ownership is a government-backed scheme which enables buyers to purchase a share in a home. Shared owners will pay a mortgage on the portion they have purchased, whilst paying subsided rent on the remaining share. As a result, the amount required for a Shared Ownership deposit is often substantially lower than buying a home on the open market.

Property portal Share to Buy is the UK’s leading independent website for first time buyers, listing over 18,000 homes available through alternative housing schemes in 2023 alone, as well as providing a wealth of independent information and how-to guides for budding buyers.

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Survey of users on Share to Buy, conducted in December 2023.

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