An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) must be provided for all homes. If you are buying, selling or renting a home, you will need one. The certificate records a property's energy efficiency and provides ratings similar to those for domestic appliances such as fridges and washing machines. It gives the building a standard energy and carbon emission efficiency grade from 'A' to 'G', with 'A' the most efficient. The average efficiency grade to date is 'D'. EPCs must be produced by an 'accredited' domestic energy assessor who carries out a survey of the property. EPCs are used to collect standard information, such as its forms of hot water and heating systems, and make assumptions about energy use so that energy efficiency can be compared with another building of the same type. This allows prospective buyers, tenants, owners and occupiers to see information about energy efficiency and fuel costs as part of their investment. An EPC is always accompanied by a recommendation report that lists cost effective and other measures (such as low and zero carbon generating systems) to improve the energy rating. A rating is also given showing what could be achieved if all the recommendations were implemented. The report lists:
Information provided is designed to help householders cut their fuel bills, improve energy performance in their home and cut carbon emissions. The certificate is important because nearly 50 per cent of the UK's energy consumption and carbon emissions arise from the way our buildings are lit, heated and used.
An EPC must now be available (free of charge):
Private landlords must make EPCs available, free of charge, to prospective tenants the first time a self-contained property is let. It is valid for a minimum of 5 years.
For more information about EPCs, visit www.campaigns.direct.gov.uk/epc