Q. What is an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?
A. An Energy Performance Certificate is a nationally recognised energy efficiency rating of a building. It grades buildings into an A to G banding, A being the best rating from an energy efficiency point of view, G being the worst. Within the body of each certificate is contained advice about improvements that could be made to the energy efficiency of the building in question, along with the likely savings to be made in energy if any or all of those improvements were made, and an indication of their cost. Measures that qualify for GREEN DEAL funding are also indicated on the document.
Q. Who needs an EPC?
A. All newly built properties are required to have an EPC for submission to Building Control.
In addition, existing properties require EPCs when they are put on the market for sale, or rent.
You will also need an EPC if you are applying for Green Deal funding, The Feed in Tariff, and the Renewable Heat Incentive.
Q. How long is an EPC valid for?
A. EPCs are valid for ten years, and only need updating should you sell or let your property, and there have been some changes that would affect the original EPC. (ie new central heating boiler, extension to property etc)
Q. Can my property ‘fail’ the EPC?
A. The only properties where a fail or pass is relevant is on new builds, where they have to comply with Building Regulations, and achieve a certain level of energy efficiency before they are allowed to be built.
For all existing properties, there is no pass or fail, they are simply rated as they stand when the survey has been carried out. If improvements that affect the energy efficiency are subsequently made that the homeowner or landlord would wish to be reflected in a new EPC, then there is nothing stopping them from commissioning a new survey to ensure that the improvements are included in a more up to date EPC.
Q. How is an Energy Performance Certificate calculated?
A. The certificate is produced from BRE and DCLG approved software, and is calculated on the basis of the cost of hot water, heating and lighting for the particular property in question.