Much like the multi-coloured sticker found on your new fridge freezer, Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) tell you about a building’s energy efficiency, giving it a rating from G (inefficient) to A (very efficient).
EPCs also carry ratings that compare the current energy efficiency and carbon dioxide emissions with potential figures that your home could achieve. These potential figures are calculated by estimating what the energy efficiency and carbon dioxide emissions would be if energy saving measures were to be put in place.
An EPC’s detailed recommendation report shows what you could do to help reduce the amount of energy you use, like fitting loft insulation, and gives the possible cost savings per year if the improvements are made. It also shows how the recommendations would change the energy and carbon emission rating of the property.
Why obtain an EPC?
Firstly, by law you must have a valid EPC available to potential buyers or tenants as soon as you start to market your property. For landlords, as of April 2018, tenanted properties must achieve at least an E rating in their EPC. If they do not, landlords will be unable to grant a new tenancy to new or existing tenants.
With regards to a new-build, it is the responsibility of the builder or developer to have an EPC produced when the home is constructed. The Building Control Body will not sign-off on completion without it.
Then there’s also the fact that the property tends to increase in value with a better EPC.
Research by the Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) found that there is a strong correlation between the price of a home and an increase in EPC performance. Researchers compared EPC G with EPC F and E and found that F/E properties were 6% more valuable. EPC D properties were valued at 8% higher, EPC C 10% higher and B/A 14% higher.
How much does an EPC cost?
The price of an energy performance certificate is determined by the market. Costs will vary according to the size, type and location of the property. However, it’s not a wasted investment – all EPCs last 10 years.
Where can I get an EPC?
EPCs can only be produced by energy assessors who are members of a government-approved accredited scheme for that type of building, and who have the appropriate qualifications or experience.