An Energy Performance Certificate shows how energy efficient a building is, how efficient it could be and how to get from one to the other.
EPC ratings indicate how energy efficient a property is, giving it a rating from A (very efficient) to G (inefficient). They also demonstrate the environmental impact of a property in terms of carbon emissions and how costly it will be to heat and light, both in monetary and CO2 terms.
A domestic energy assessor, the person qualified to produce an EPC for your property, is taking into account three main things:
The size of your property. The first thing an assessor will do is to measure the volume of your property. This shows them the exact amount of space that needs to be heated.
How you heat your property. Do you have a gas boiler? If so, how efficient is it? If not, what energy source do you use to heat your home? What emits the heat? (underfloor, radiators) How do you control that heat? (a timer, TRVs, room thermostat)
How do you keep that heat and energy inside your property? In other words, once you heat up your property, how easy is it for the heat to escape? Do you have a decent loft, wall insulation? Double glazing? Draught proofing?
From April 2018, it will be unlawful under the Energy Act 2011 to let a residential property on a new contract with an EPC rating of F or G – the lowest two categories. This will not apply to existing lettings until 2023, however, there are potential and significant, implications for landowners with large and growing portfolios of residential lets, particularly those with older properties that have not had the benefit of recent improvements.
In addition, tenants living in F and G rated homes will be able to request that their landlord takes measures to improve the energy efficiency, with the landlord duty-bound to respond within a month with a view to bringing the property up to the minimum E rating.
Landlords can best prepare by acting sooner rather than later to gain an understanding of the energy efficiencies of their let property assets.
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