What is an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?
An Energy Performance Certificate rates a building in terms of its capability to use energy efficiently. The building is rated on a scale of A – G rather like white electrical goods. The rating is produced based on the building’s CO2 emissions per m2 of floor area and provides details of where the building’s energy is being used, i.e., Heating, Lighting and Cooling etc.
Who is responsible for an EPC?
It is the responsibility of a Vendor to provide an EPC for the sale of a property. It is the responsibility of a Landlord to provide an EPC for a rental property. In cases of properties under construction, the responsibility lies with the person or company responsible for having the construction works carried out.
Do both domestic and commercial properties need EPCs?
Yes. An EPC has been a legal requirement since 2008 for any property, whether commercial or domestic, that is to be sold or let. Since April 2012, legislation has been set in place that makes it illegal to also market a property without a valid EPC and the responsibility is now jointly shared with Landlord/Property owner and Estate or Letting Agent to ensure the property has a valid EPC before being put up for market.
How often will I need an Energy Performance Certificate?
Energy Performance Certificates are valid for 10 years, regardless of whether the building is resold, released or re-let within this time period.
At what point in the selling process will I need an Energy Performance Certificate?
Currently you are required by law to commission an Energy Performance Certificate within 28 days of marketing.
I have heard that if a building is rated an F or G then it cannot be rented out. Is this true?
This is true, unless you go for an Exemption. However, this is not an easy option. For more details look at the MEES page.
Are listed buildings exempt?
Are listed buildings exempt from the need to have an EPC? From January 2013 there has been an ‘exemption’ for listed buildings. However, the exemption is qualified, it states: “Insofar as compliance with certain minimum energy performance requirements would unacceptably alter their character or appearance”.
Does a shop with a flat above require a domestic AND a commercial EPC?
If you are selling, renting or building commercial property, you need a Commercial EPC. If a building is split into parts ‘designed or altered to be used as separate accommodation’ the parts may each require their own EPC. The sale and let of commercial buildings can be complex with multiple tenancies and uses.
Do all buildings need an EPC?
Domestic Buildings that don’t need an EPC:
- places of worship
- temporary buildings that will be used for less than 2 years
- stand-alone buildings with total useful floor space of less than 50 square metres
- industrial sites, workshops and non-residential agricultural buildings that don’t use a lot of energy
- some buildings that are due to be demolished
- holiday accommodation that’s rented out for less than 4 months a year or is let under a licence to occupy
- listed buildings – you should get advice from your local authority conservation officer if the work would alter the building’s character
- residential buildings intended to be used less than 4 months a year.
Commercial Buildings that don’t need an EPC:
You don’t need an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) if you can demonstrate that the building is any of these:
- listed or officially protected and the minimum energy performance requirements would unacceptably alter it
- a temporary building only going to be used for 2 years or less
- used as a place of worship or for other religious activities
- an industrial site, workshop or non-residential agricultural building that doesn’t use much energy
- a detached building with a total floor space under 50 square metres
- due to be demolished by the seller or landlord and they have all the relevant planning and conservation consents.
Vacant buildings and demolition
A building is also exempt if all of the following are true:
- it’s due to be sold or rented out with vacant possession
- it’s suitable for demolition and the site could be redeveloped
- the buyer or tenant has applied for planning permission to demolish it.
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