What is an EPC?
As part of a European Directive, an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is still mandatory if you intend to sell or rent your property.
EPCs will provide information on a building's energy efficiency using a simple sliding scale - 'A' being the most efficient, to 'G' the least efficient In addition to the Energy Efficiency Rating (relating to running costs), the EPC will also show the Environment Impact Rating (relating to the carbon dioxide emissions).
An EPC report will make recommendations of how you can improve the rating of your property however; there are no statutory requirements to carry out any of the recommended energy efficiency measures.
Only qualified, accredited domestic energy assessors and qualified, certified home inspectors can produce EPCs for domestic properties. They analyse how homes are constructed, insulated, heated and ventilated, and the type of fuel being used.
Once your property has been given an EPC, it gets a unique number and is registered on a national database by the assessor. You can download extra copies by using the report reference number on the top right-hand side of the certificate.
Sellers are, by law are required show proof that they have ordered the report but don’t need to have received an EPC before marketing their property, realistically the EPC must be on all details that are used for advertising and with the agent within 28 days after the first day of marketing or you can be fined.
EPC's for Landlords?
As from 1st October 2008, it is compulsory that all properties 'to let' have an EPC.
In October 2018 it became law that a property needs to be E or above to rent it out. This has a bearing if you are trying to sell a property below an E as you cannot get a buy to let mortgage until this rating has been improved
An EPC is only required for a dwelling that is self contained, meaning that it does not have an entrance via a separate unit or share any essential facilities (bathroom, kitchen etc). Landlords are not required to produce an EPC when an existing lease is renewed, only when the tenant changes.
EPCs are valid for 10 years and can be reused for new tenants as many times as required within that period. A landlord may choose to commission a new EPC if improvement works have been carried out, but there is no legal requirement to do so.
At Cooke & Co we can recommend a qualified EPC inspector who charges in the region of £70 but this also includes a 2D floor plan which we then convert free of charge into a 3D floor plan for you maximising you properties exposure to the market.