If you are a landlord in England or Wales, you need to know about the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). But what exactly is this, how do you get one and what happens if you don’t provide one when required? Here’s a guide to everything you need to know
Overview of the EPC
The EPC is a certificate that provides your building with a Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) rating. It also provides an energy rating that goes from A (efficient) to G (inefficient).
The EPC also shows the estimated energy use for the property and gives an idea of the gas and electricity costs and CO2 emissions.
The idea is that your tenants can quickly see how efficient the property is, providing them with a rough idea of how much it will cost to pay for electricity and gas.
Do You Need One?
Landlords in England and Wales must have an EPC for every property they let out to tenants, and this has been the case since 2008.
You must provide the EPC to tenants, and you cannot charge them for it. Make sure you show it to them during the viewing or before the tenancy is finalised.
How Do You Get an EPC?
Getting an EPC for your property is easy. You simply need to contact a qualified Energy Assessor in your area. Prices vary, but you should easily be able to get one for under £100.
They will then visit the property and gather information about it, taking various factors into consideration including the age of the property, the type of construction and its insulation. The process normally takes about an hour.
As well as your EPC, you will get a recommendation report providing suggested improvements and how much energy they could save. These could include switching to LEDs or installing loft insulation.
What Happens If You Don’t Have an EPC?
You must have the EPC within seven days of starting to market your property, or you could be hit with a penalty.
Since April 2018, you must also get an E rating as a minimum if you want to let the property. If you fail to get an E rating, you could end up with a fine of £4,000.
How Long Does It Last?
The EPC lasts for 10 years, and after this you will need to renew it. However, if you carry out large renovation works, you may have to renew it sooner.
Get an EPC for Your Property
Make sure you have an EPC for every property that you let out to tenants and avoid being faced with fines. They are easy to arrange, last 10 years and help your tenants to make a more informed decision about renting your property.
Also, remember that by taking steps to improve your property’s efficiency, you could get a better rating on your EPC, which could help to attract more tenants to your property.