They are not just unsightly but, in many people’s eyes, a health risk. “I always mentally knock off around 30 per cent when I am valuing properties with pylons in the close vicinity,” says Jonathan Harington of Haringtons UK. That is the equivalent of £72,000 off the value of the average property.
Data released last year by the Valuation Office Agency reveals a number of home owners have successfully applied to have their properties placed in a lower council band because of their proximity to a wind farm. Hard evidence is difficult to come by, but one couple in Devon saw the value of their property reduced from £400,000 to £300,000.
Out of the Top Ten items to devalue your house the Telegraph identified two energy elements up there with the neighbours from hell and the noisy pub. Funnily enough power stations, coal, gas or nuclear never featured. Could this be that those that live close to these tend to have found employment in them or benefit from the financial stability they bring to the Community. Bit different to wind when the only beneficiaries are absentee landlords and off-shore holding companies, excepting the meagre crumbs of Community Benefit.
This slightly understates the problem in the case of wind which is planning blight on proposed but not approved wind farms when agents will simply not wish to take instruction. As most applications can take up to three years in the case of a Public Local Inquiry this can put the house owner in an invidious position. The second issue is if the development goes ahead where often properties become unsellable. This is what has eschewed the figures provided by RICS. Their figures are based on sales completed, not property with no buyers. No agent wants property on his books that he cannot move as it reduces his performance figures, the figures that encourage house sellers to place their properties in his hands!
Towers(pylons) are an established blight as I well know. We have three towers on our property, one less than a fifty metres from the house. With an empty nest it was not a problem for us and connected to hydro dams they are not always working. However without the towers I should expect the property to have been up to £200,000 more expensive. When we come to sell we understand that we will be looking at a price that reflects the presence of the towers. A point of note: the “Pylons” in the photo are actually technically Towers. Pylons are smaller structures normally in wood and poles are what bring the electricity to your house. The development of the Beauly-Denny line and the overhead line planned for North Wales has raised the whole issue of Health ,Proximity and Visual Impact as never before and the preference on coast basis for over-grounding for Wind Farms has upped the ante. SEPA has recently taken a view opposing underground cables.
This will adversely effect a great number of households. Modern standards for Towers require much greater clearance than previously but the added bulk is very intrusive.