Get ready all the life taxs are coming!
A NEW Federal Government green scheme threatens to hit the market price of older homes.
The Government aims to introduce, by as soon as next year, mandatory energy star ratings for homes being sold or rented out.
Vendors and landlords would have to pay about $200 to have their property assessed, with a total cost to homeowners and property investors of $1.1 billion over 10 years.
Housing experts said older four-bedroom, two-bathroom homes - often referred to as McMansions - would score poorly. The ratings system would be similar to that used to identify the energy efficiency of whitegoods.
Mick Fabar, director of private energy-ratings firm Green Homes Australia, said: "Through our experience with our rating tool those two-storey McMansions out at Kellyville would not get over zero."
There are significant financial implications for owners of these homes - and most older dwellings which are also likely to rate lowly.
Homeowners would need to spend up on going green or face the prospect of a lower sale price.
A Federal Government study into a similar scheme operating in the ACT since 1999, which rates properties out of 10, found a one-star difference affected selling prices by 3 per cent.
If mirrored in Adelaide, a one-star variation on a $400,000 house would equal $12,000.
Star ratings have been criticised for failing to factor in actual consumption, leading to questions about whether the changes would reduce power use.
A spokeswoman for Climate Change Minister Greg Combet said the system would "allow buyers and renters to better compare different properties, making it easier to identify a property which uses less energy or water and thereby save money."
Opposition climate change spokesman Greg Hunt said it would create "enormous uncertainty". "It could push up the cost of rent for people when they are feeling cost-of-living pressures," he said.
"It's another cost imposed on people from the government."
NSW member for Hawkesbury, Liberal Ray Williams, said: "It's an absolute disgrace that the federal government could try to impose this to try to claim some green credibility.
"It shows how out of touch this government is."
Raine & Horne CEO Angus Raine suggested Sydneysiders were so consumed with getting on the property ladder that star ratings would be discounted by buyers.
"People look at the physical property first and then (a mandatory disclosure system) is going to be one of their second or third considerations in their purchasing matrix," Mr Raine said.
A July 2011 "consultation regulation impact statement" prepared for the federal and state governments forecast the system would affect about 416,000 NSW homes in its first year of operation - about 129,000 sales and 287,000 leases - at a cost of nearly $300 million.
Beaumont Hills resident Scott Silva said yesterday the government had no right to introduce a mandatory energy rating system.
"It's up to private industry to make sure their products are energy efficient and not the government. The idea is useless," he said.
While owners of McMansions are much maligned by greenies, many self-proclaimed environmentalists would not measure up against the Silvas, who have a range of energy-saving measures in their home.
Mr Silvan and his wife Francine purchased a 1.5kW solar system for their roof through company Easy Being Green in March.
They also have switched to energy-efficient bulbs. They encourage their children to turn off the lights. They reduce water and power bills by monitoring shower times. Installing a water tank is on the to-do list.
According to the Australian Energy Market Commission, the average annual NSW electricity bill will go from $1486 to $1810 in 2012-13.http://www.adelaidenow.com.au/green-hit-on-prices-of-older-houses/story-e6frea6u-1226114104564