What does the European law provide for “green” homes that will cost Italians dearly?

European homes must be green. Once the discussions are over, there is now certainty: the European Parliament has approved the directive, which will cost Italian families up to 50 thousand euros. It took a year of negotiations. In January 2023 we were here ( and finally the definitive version – which now passes to the European Council and then enters into force – although softer and more flexible, it still imposes obligations, limits and dates to be respected, with heavy consequences on the pockets of Italians.

By 2050 zero emissions for the building stock of all European countries. But the harmonized energy classes disappear. There are no longer any obligations to move from one class to another by certain dates. But each State will establish how to take action to achieve the common objectives: a 16% reduction in energy consumption compared to 2020 by 2030 and a 20-22% reduction by 2035. However, there is a further constraint: the decline will have to be achieved by restructuring 43% of properties with the worst performance. In Italy it means that 5 million residential buildings must be renovated as a priority by 2030-2035.

From 2040 (and not from 2035 as initially expected) there will be a ban on the use of boilers powered by fossil fuels and a stop to subsidies for autonomous methane boilers from 2025. In Italy there are 19 million gas boilers and 7 million are more than 15 years old. The incentives remain only for hybrid heating systems, those that combine boilers and heat pumps. For solar panels the obligation will only be for new public buildings, from 2026 to 2030 gradually. As regards new constructions: from 2030 all new residential buildings will have to be built with zero emissions (in the first version 2028 was assumed). Obligation starting from 2028 for public buildings. Who will be exempt from the European green revolution? Properties subject to specific restrictions or area restrictions, religious properties, temporary properties, second homes used for less than four months a year, defense properties and those under 50 square metres.

Member countries have two years to implement the rules, but without being able to count on new European funds. There are no ad hoc financing provisions, but countries will have to “make do” with the Social Climate Fund, the Recovery Fund and the Regional Development Funds. From now until 2030, 275 billion per year will be needed, i.e. 152 billion euros of annual investments more than current resources (calculation by the European Commission itself). Italy is one of the most affected European countries. 60% of Italian buildings are now positioned among the worst energy classes. We have a very old real estate portfolio made up of very energy-intensive properties. Out of 12.2 million buildings, over 9 million do not even reach the minimum energy guarantees required for buildings built after the entry into force of the comprehensive regulation on energy saving and seismic safety of 2005. And according to the directive approved in Brussels this it means that there are 5 million residential buildings that will need to be renovated as a priority. Whether it's the coat, the change of fixtures, the modification of the boilers… without incentives and adequate tax breaks, the expenses for Italian families in the next (not very distant) years will be significant.