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What Are Energy Performance Certificates?

What Are Energy Performance Certificates?

Why Do I Need an Energy Performance Certificate?


Energy Performance CertificatesSince a European Directive came into force in 2007, Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) are now required for any home that is being bought, sold or rented.

The EPC is a report which shows how energy efficient a property is and also gives examples of which improvements can be made and what increased energy efficiency can be had from them along with an example calculation of the potential money savings to be made if you carry out the work.

There are some types of properties that have exclusions and these are typically:

  • Buildings of worship
  • Free standing buildings with useable floor space under 50sq Mtr
  • A building that is only temporary (can only be used for 2yr or less)
  • One that is scheduled for removal or demolition
  • Industrial, non-residential, agriculture buildings & workshops with minor energy usage
  • Rental Holiday or some residential property that is let (or used) for less than 4 months every year

If your property does not fall into any of the above categories, then you must be able to produce a valid EPC if you are going to sell it or rent it. If you are going to rent or buy, then whoever is renting or selling you the property must provide you with a valid EPC.  A new EPC is valid for 10 Years.

What Does an EPC look like?

Basically it’s a report or survey and grades the property alphabetically from A to G (A is best) and gives a colour code for each grade (green = good, red = not so good).

To have your own report done will cost from £60 to £120 but can very regionally and can also depend on who does the report for you – you can arrange your own (https://www.epcregister.com/searchAssessor.html ) or maybe arrange one through the Estate Agent that you are dealing with.

England, Wales & Northern Ireland have the same type of requirements, but Scotland has its own (http://www.gov.scot/Topics/Built-Environment/Housing/BuyingSelling/Home-Report )

Contents of Energy Performance Certificates

Your estimated Energy costs for heat, light & hot water for the next 3 years are covered in the first section, plus potential future savings.

Next it will show your current & future potential energy rating.

The “top actions you can take” to improve your rating will then be covered, such as home insulation, replacing the windows & doors, solar panels, draught proofing, replacement boilers etc. This is then followed by a summary and a series of recommendations. Typically, the report is at least 4 pages long.

You can see an example of an EPC here: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/5996/2116821.pdf

Renewable Energy & EPC’s

If you are thinking of installing something like solar panels then a good EPC rating is important as the level of Feed In Tariff you receive will depend on the EPC rating. It need to be better than D to get the full tariff rate.