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UK Eco Loan

Plans to make UK homes more energy efficient through new "eco-loans" could help to push up property prices but reduce the size of mortgages buyers can borrow, property market experts warned today.

The government plans to allow homeowners to borrow money to fund the upfront costs of eco-upgrades, such as the installation of solid wall insulation, heat pumps and solar panels.

Instead of paying for the energy efficient work upfront, homeowners will be able to take out a long-term loan, with repayments made through a pay-as-you-save mechanism. The loans will be designed so the repayments are less than the amount the borrower saves each month on energy bills, producing a monthly surplus.

This means that anyone living in a house that has had energy efficiency work done could make money out of the process even while the loan is being paid off.

In its household energy management strategy, the government acknowledged that although efficient homes were cheaper to run, this had not yet been reflected in house-buyer demand or property prices.

"A price differential between energy efficient and inefficient homes, coupled with the added prospects of lower fuel bills, would offer homeowners greater incentive to invest in energy efficiency measures," it said.

It has asked the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) to develop recommendations for both government and property professionals "so that the energy performance of a property starts to be better reflected in its market value".

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Camellia Colours Red

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The 3 houses at Camellia Colors named “Camellia Red” are designed to offer tranquility and comfort for those looking for a holiday home or something different from an apartment. They have large verandas and gardens according to which one you will finally decide. An additional feature is the unique style and materials used to dress the exterior of the houses. All 3 houses are strategically located within short driving distance to Limassol's central avenues and the motorway but far enough not to get disturbed by the city noises. 

Martin Ellis, chief economist at the Halifax, one of the UK's biggest lenders, said he thought the strategy would pay off.

"Annually homeowners should be better off: I think energy efficiency will become something that people take into consideration alongside location. It won't make a huge difference to prices, but it should be a positive one," he said.

One potential sticking point is that the new loans will be attached to the properties involved.

If a borrower sells up before the loan is paid off, the loan will have to be paid by the next owner. Some mortgage experts fear this could have the effect of reducing the amount buyers can borrow when taking out a mortgage.

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