What’s an EPC?
The EPC is a document used for recording the energy efficiency of a property along with its environmental impact. The property is given a grade from A to G with ‘A’ indicating a high level of energy efficiency and ‘G’ indicating that the property is poor in energy efficiency. The higher the rating, the more attractive the property is likely to be in the eyes of prospective buyers, or tenants if you are letting the property. If you are in need of EPC Services then please see here!
To obtain an EPC, the property must be first inspected by an accredited energy assessor, or you can request the estate agent to arrange one for you. After the inspection is done, you will receive a certificate, which is the EPC. The certificate (EPC) is then valid for a period of 10 years.
Why Is an EPC Required When Selling My Property?
According to the law, an EPC is mandatory when selling a property. It is the responsibility of the vendor to ensure that they have valid EPC for the property before marketing it for sale. If the EPC has expired, you need to ensure that you commission a new one before the property is put up for sale. If you are using an estate agent to sell the property, he/she can help you either obtain a new EPC or renew the existing one.
The EPC is important for prospective buyers since it provides information about the general energy efficiency of the property, the amount of energy it uses, and what energy costs are involved in running the property. It also advises on how the property’s energy efficiency can be enhanced thus helping to lower energy costs further.
The solicitor representing the buyer will request that the seller to produce an EPC and if they fail to produce it by the required deadline, they can be fined.
EPC Regulation Changes That Affect Landlords
Landlords will always be required to provide EPCs before letting their property. The regulations surrounding EPCs, however, were changed back in 2018 and this affected landlords as well as their rental properties.
The new Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) came into force from 1st April, 2018. The new regulations stated that any property rented out in the private rented sector would need to have an EPC rating of not less than ‘E’.
Properties with a rating of ‘F’ and ‘G’ would no longer be let out after this date. In the first instance, the changes would apply to new lets and tenancy renewals only. However, starting April 1st 2020 and onwards, they would apply to all tenancies, both new and existing.
Landlords of properties with an ‘F’ or ‘G’ rating are allowed to make improvements to their properties at no cost of their own by using third party finance. It is in the best interests of a landlord for their property to be as energy-efficient as possible since this would be highly appealing to tenants.
The prospect of lower energy bills along with a warmer and better-insulated property will always be attractive to tenants. And should the landlord ever experience a void period where he/she is required to cover the energy bills, both the landlord and tenants will enjoy the savings.
It is in the interests of both landlords and homeowners (particularly those planning to sell their property at some point) to keep improving the energy efficiency of their properties to achieve a higher rating where necessary.
The minimum energy rating is currently ‘E’, but this will likely change in the near future as the government works to reduce carbon emissions by ensuring that properties are energy efficient.