Invest in Paris

A word about energy saving home improvements

A full-scale renovation will almost certainly include a utilities component. Focus on the most efficient options, those that will be eligible for energy grants and tax reductions. Analysis.

Carrying out restoration works on an old property immediately increases its value. As a one-off, certain well-targeted operations will improve the thermal or acoustic comfort of a home. And the cherry on top: such expenditure can result in tax deductions or an interest-free energy loan. Details.


Works that pay

It’s hard to avoid the need for work on the energy aspects of a property when dealing with the complete renovation of an old building. The list of works that contribute to the comfort of a home and make it less of an energy guzzler is pretty long. It stretches from converting the attic to insulating the roof, the walls, or the floorboards, via fitting a new boiler and new ventilation. Contrary to popular opinion, replacing the windows is not the most efficient way of consuming less energy heating (or cooling) a space. According to the national housing agency (Agence nationale de l’habitat (ANAH)), the “good” combinations of works are: attic and boiler or attic and insulation of exterior walls.


The tax position

Amateurs beware. The tax rules associated with energy saving home improvements have recently changed. Up until the end of 2015, the tax credit for energy transition (Crédit d’impôt pour la transition énergétique (CITE)) affords a tax advantage of 30% of the cost of the works irrespective of their size or nature. The law places a ceiling on this “tax gift”: €8000 for a single person and €16,000 for a couple registered to submit a joint tax return, with an additional €400 permitted for each person under the taxpayer’s care.



The “Eco PTZ” is an interest-free loan conceived by the State specifically for the purpose of aiding and encouraging property owners to invest in such works. Granted regardless of income, such a loan is subject to certain conditions. Two (or even three) types of work must be carried out from a list of six categories (draft insulation, replacing a heating system, etc.). If these conditions are met, the loan can be up to as much as €20,000 per property repayable over 10 years (for a two work “bouquet”) or €30,000 over 15 years (for a 3-work combo).


Note: once a certain income bracket is reached, the Eco PTZ is not cumulative with the CITE. In addition, simulations are necessary to figure out which of the two solutions is the most financially advantageous.