Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs)
An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) informs potential buyers and tenants about the energy performance and efficiency of a building. Containing all of the information regarding a property’s energy usage, carbon dioxide emissions, typical energy costs and recommended actions about how to reduce these factors, an EPC is compulsory documentation required for the purchase, renting or selling of a property.
EPCs are based on the calculated energy efficiency for a building, taking into account a number of variables for properties which have been marketed or let since 2008. The ratings range from A to G, with A being very efficient and G the least efficient. All certificates are valid for 10 years and come with a recommendation report (RR), which includes advice and suggestions on improvements to save energy and reduce carbon emissions.
Do I need an EPC to lease/sell my property?
It is essential that property owners/landlords order an EPC as soon as the property has been built or prior to it going on the market, as this will enable prospective buyers and tenants to examine and compare the energy efficiency and how much it will cost to light and heat the property. As a result, they will be able to make more of an educated decision as to whether to invest in purchasing or occupying the building.
Property owners and landlords must also make sure the EPC is readily available for potential buyers/tenants to access for free, and if the building is sold, the new owner must also be given a copy. Should an individual choose to purchase the property, they will be given a copy of the EPC by the seller to reuse if the building is sold or rented out.
How do I obtain an EPC?
To obtain an EPC, property owners will need to find an accredited assessor regardless of whether they are selling or renting. They will carry out a thorough examination of the property and produce the certificate based on their overall findings. It should be noted that property owners who do not possess an EPC when one is required can be fined.
Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES)
The Domestic Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES) Regulations outline a minimum energy efficiency level for private residential and non-domestic rented properties. If your property is let out on an assured, regulated or domestic agricultural tenancy and has been marketed for sale, let or modified over the last 10 years, it is highly likely that it will require an EPC and will therefore be covered by MEES Regulations.
From 1 April 2018, landlords of privately rented residential and non-domestic properties (including public sector landlords) in England and Wales may not grant a tenancy – including a renewal tenancy – to new or existing tenants if their property has an EPC rating of F or G. This is part of a bid to encourage landlords and property owners to improve the energy efficiency of their properties.
In addition, from 1 April 2023, landlords must not continue to let out a non-domestic property if it has an EPC rating of F or G. Anyone planning to/letting a property with a tenancy period that started before 1April 2018 covered by MEES Regulations and with an EPC rating of F or G will need to take action by 1 April 2020 to improve the building to an E rating or above.
EPC Improvement Projects
SOCOTEC has a wealth of experience in undertaking EPCs and providing information on how to improve a building’s overall rating. Our EPC improvement projects start with a site visit to collect the relevant dimensions and information to produce a current ‘baseline’ EPC. Detailed energy improvement modelling is then used to provide the options and associated budget costs to achieve the required improvement in EPC rating for the building.
With government talks in place regarding the imposition of new duties on landlords to improve energy efficiency ratings, those who rent out properties will need to sharpen their environmental focus over the next few years. An EPC improvement project survey will set your baseline and launch your action plan to stay ahead of the game.
Contact us to find out more about how SOCOTEC can support you with EPCs and MEEs.