Downsizing the family home allowed one Gloucestershire couple to live a more sustainable life

The house-buying process is the perfect time to start considering options to switch to more sustainable energy. One couple from Stonehouse in Stroud downsized their family home after their children had flown the nest, opting to install solar panels and splash out on an electric car, too.

By Sarah Kent  |  Published
Downsizing the family home after their grown-up children had moved out allowed one Gloucestershire couple to make the leap towards a more sustainable lifestyle.

One of the benefits of downsizing the family home, after children are grown and off on independent adventures, is the release of some of your equity — freeing up funds for projects such as eco-friendly upgrades and maybe even a new car, too.

And this is exactly what one couple from Stonehouse near Stroud did, when they sold the family home and moved into a smaller property. The solar experts at Immersa, a renewable energy specialist based in Dursley, helped the family realise their sustainability aspirations, designing them a new solar-powered system that would set them up for lower energy usage and a greener future with less carbon emissions.

Michael Lamerton, head of commerical at Immersa, said: 'We had previously installed solar PV panels on this family's old home, as well as a battery storage system. In this case, they weren't able to bring the old panels with them when they moved house, so we designed a new system for them and reinstalled the battery.

'The family also said they were thinking about getting an electric car and asked if we could provide a charger too, which, when we installed at the same time as the panels, was zero per cent VAT, saving a fair bit of money for them.'

The designers at Immersa did a full survey of the house, deciding where to place the battery, how many panels the roof would need and the best location for a fast-charging Zappi electric charger for the couple's new car when it arrived. 

As part of the process the company did a thorough survey of the couple's electricity usage over the last 12 months, also calculating how much electricity their new panels would make, versus how much energy the battery would store and what could be sold back to the National Grid or directed back into the house.

'We also installed an intelligent EV charger that has three modes, including a fast charge and an eco mode to minimise energy taken from the grid. In addition, it has an Eco Plus mode that detects when the property's battery storage is full, and instead of any excess energy going back to the grid, it goes into the charger and tells the car to start charging.'

This mode allowed a huge 21 per cent of excess energy to go automatically into charging the couple's electric car, helping to ensure electricity bills were kept to a minimum without the worry of having to attend to it manually.

The couple's new solar system and EV charger was installed in just one day, a mere three weeks after paying their initial deposit. The new PV panels and installation cost £5,677, with an additional £1,000 for the EV charger. This amount will be recouped from reduced energy bills and selling excess power back to the National Grid in seven years, also saving a very respectable 707,020 grams of carbon dioxide emissions every year.

To find out more about renewable power options for your house, book in for a free consultation with Immersa on (01453) 545222 or visit

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