The answer is yes and no. Any new buildings and those which have being rehabilitated from 2007 are forced to pass an energy certification exam and be provided with an energy certificate label. On January 1st of this year, the law should had been passed for existing buildings but.....the Spanish Congress must be too busy with other problems and although everyone I have talked to, including the Official College of Architect of both Murcia and Valencia, they all say that it is eminent the publication of the law for existing buildings but as yet, it still it has not been published.
The deadlines set by the European directive 31/2010 and by the 2/2011 Law of Sustainable Economy has been surpassed by 3 months and counting.
Pending since January the 1st.
The law requires from 2007 that new homes to have a Certificate, similar to that shown on electric appliances where its energy consumption is shown. In brief, this certificate must also apply to second hand properties. The owners must obtain a certificate for their properties to present this information to buyers and tenants. I think that the environmental economic and social benefits, justified this law, already applied for years in other countries of the European Union.
The Energy Certificate is used in various goods, from appliances to tires. Thanks to an eco-label ordered by letters and colours, the consumer knows the energy consumption of the product. Obviously higher energy consumption means increased economic spending and greater impact on the environment.
More than 500.000 dwellings will be affected.
The amount of houses that must be certified annually in Spain is estimated at about 500.000 units.
To have an Energy Certificate will be compulsory for all purchases of private individuals, real estate or public buildings, as well as leases or rentals, from its entry into force. However, any owner can request this on a voluntary basis since 2007. This Energy Certificate will affect consumers in the following manner:
Obviously for sellers and landlords: It would imply a cost and providing this information could be good or bad, depending on the construction quality of the property. The buildings with the best rankings will be more competitive in the market against other similar worse qualified. Properties with bad energy rating could be improved by changing their systems of heating and insulation.
The story for those who want to buy or rent a house is different; The Certificate will serve to give them more decision-making power to promote a more efficient offer. The cost savings and the quality of life and health will be enhanced.
As I mentioned before we are talking about half a million dwelling that exchange hands every year as per the letting there aren't any national statistics.
Advantages and disadvantages of the Energy Certificate.
With regards to the environmental situation the advantage is evident: it will lead to improving the energy efficiency of dwellings and the reduction of pollution and emissions implicated in climate change. The European Union (EU) believes that the building consume up to 40% of the energy consumption of its Member States.
With regards to the social aspects: consumers will know the energy consumption of the property before it is bought o rented and, the future money that will be required to be put aside to pay the energy bills.
Economic: A new much need push to real estate business will be done as new certificates will have to be produced and consequent restoration of properties will produce business and jobs, much needed in Spain right now.
The Certificate will also face several challenges. To start with, this law despite being approved in the year 2007, for new buildings (RD 472007, of 19 January) does not work as it should. Some Regional Communities such as Murcia for example, has not approved the required subsequent decrees, and therefore it has not even a registrar for this type of certificate as yet.
Next week we will continue informing on this interesting Energy Certificates which will affect most of us.