Energy Performance Certificate regulations require that everyone who either buys or newly rents a building, be informed of the calculated energy usage of the house. This is done by an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC).
What does the EPC tell you?
The EPC tells you, in a diagrammatic form, the energy band into which your house falls on a scale of A to G, a bit like a fridge label (A – very good, costs less than average to heat; G – very poor, costs more to heat).
The EPC is accompanied by: –
- a list of cost effective measures that can be undertaken to improve the energy efficiency of the house; and
- the estimated cost savings for heating, lighting and hot water that can be made by following each of the measures recommended above.
There is no requirement for anyone to carry out these measures but, if they are carried out, the dwelling will be more energy efficient and will cost less to heat, light and provide hot water.
What to do if an EPC is not made available when you buy or rent a house?
Vendors and landlords are legally obliged to make available an EPC at the time of purchase or rental. There are regulatory powers to fine those people who fail to provide an EPC. The fine is £200 for each complaint.
Buying or newly renting a house?
Any existing house on sale after 30th June 2008 should have an EPC. The EPC should be available to you when you make an enquiry about the house. It is the responsibility of the person who is selling the house to provide this certificate. When you buy a house your solicitor should receive the EPC with other legal documents from the seller’s solicitor. If you are newly renting a home from 30th December 2008 the EPC for the property should be available to you as soon as you express an interest in it. It is the responsibility of the Landlord who is offering the property for rental to provide the EPC. EPCs are valid for 10 years.