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Thermal balance, creation of an extension, insulation works ... Quick overview of specialists who can support you, and reasons to contact them ...

1. Perform a heat balance

The DPE or energy performance diagnosis allows you to know the energy efficiency of your home and its level of CO2 emissions. If it does not induce any obligation of work, it can direct you in your choices of renovation. It is a diagnoser who realizes a DPE, valid for ten years. Do a search in the directory or on the Internet: you will find that there is a plethora of companies. To make the right choice, know that since October 16, 2006, every diagnoser must be certified by an accredited body. Finally, play the competition (the rates vary on average from 150 to 250 €).

2. Create an extension

- The realization of an extension can not be improvised: it requires advanced knowledge not to degrade the existing building and achieve a perfect integration. Individual home builders are increasingly turning to this activity to offset the current decline in the new construction market due to the financial crisis.
For more info, visit www .uniondesmaisonsfrancaises.org or www.uci-ffb.fr.

Is an architect necessary? Among the missions it can provide, a duty of advice, both upstream (feasibility, choice of companies and materials), during the realization (site monitoring, deadlines), than at the reception. Its intervention is obligatory for development works bringing the surface to more than 170 m2. His remuneration will vary according to several criteria: overall amount, complexity of the site and nature of the mission. It may be fixed, as a percentage of the cost of the work or the hourly shift. Check with the order of architects (www.architectes.org).

3. Decide on work to be done

From now on, the energy suppliers advise you on the work to be undertaken. EDF Bleu Ciel (www.edf-bleu ciel.fr) has thus created Estimate Works (€ 69) for a simple budget evaluation and Objective Works (299 €), personalized support by a counselor. This one establishes after visit, according to your needs and financial means, a diagnosis and recommendations (materials, solutions, financing). If you wish, you are put in touch with partners of EDF Bleu Ciel for the realization of the works. Gaz de France DolceVita (www.dolcevita.gazde france.fr) offers for 199 € a diagnosis energy savings: thermal diagnosis on site, simulations of work, recommendations ... Here too, a list of partners can be provided.

4. Review the insulation

If it is possible to isolate one's home or to change one's windows on one's own, recourse to a specialist is useful. On the one hand, because the installation will be carried out in the rules of the art, while respecting the thermal regulation, on the other because the call to a professional opens the way to savings and aids: eco-PTZ, tax credit, VAT at 5.5% ... The Capeb * (www .capeb.fr) created the brand Eco Craftsman for companies able to offer a global thermal assessment, a thermal renovation and realization. For its part, the FFB ** (www .ffbatiment.fr) created the charter Building with the environment for energy improvement works. The signatories, called the "Energy Performance Pros", have the words "energy saving" or "energy renovation" in the case of a global offer. Another possibility: holding a Qualibat certificate (www.qualibat.net) attests to the company's commitment to quality.
* Confederation of Crafts and Small Business Building.
** French Building Federation.

5. Switch to renewable energies

They have the wind in their sails and attract many companies. To choose your specialist, know that an organism, Qualit'EnR (www.qualit-enr.org), brings together four quality appellations for renewable energies: Quali sol (hot water and solar heating), Quali PV (solar electricity), Quali wood (wood energy heating) and Quali PAC (aerothermal and geothermal heating). The companies holding these appellations have been the subject of a rigorous control of their skills and justify compulsory insurance.

Specialized Networks and Construction Brokers

Lack of desire, time to do yourself work? Give follow-up to a specialist. National brokerage networks (Activ Works, Illico Works ...) are there to search companies. Another player, Thermorénov supports the individual throughout the renovation by being a single interlocutor. Camif Habitat offers a thermal renovation service (390 a): study, selection of partners, support.

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