Energy Performance Certificates are required on the construction, sale or rent of nearly all properties so the chances are that your property does need one. An EPC is valid for 10 years and there are some very limited exemptions.
Rented properties that need an EPC
If you are letting your property an EPC is required for:
- An individual house/dwelling (i.e. a self contained property with its own kitchen/bathroom facilities).
- Self contained flats (i.e. each behind its own front door with its own kitchen/bathroom facilities) – separate EPCs will be required for each flat.
- Shared flats/houses (e.g. a letting of a whole flat or house to students/young professionals etc. on a single tenancy agreement) – you only require one EPC for the whole house.
- Mixed self contained and non self contained accommodation – one EPC is required for each self contained flat/unit but no EPC is required for the remainder of the property.
What are your obligations?
- Before you market you property and that includes marketing it for rent, you need to book an appointment with an Energy Assessor so that you have an EPC. Your EPC has to be available within 7 days of marketing unless there is a valid reason and every attempt has been made to get one in which case a further 21 days are allowed. If following this extension there is still no EPC, the property must be withdrawn from the market.
- The EPC rating must be included in all advertising/commercial media. Where there is room in the particulars, the graph should also be included. Where there is not room, it is sufficient just to show the rating.
- It is primarily the property owner’s responsibility to ensure there is an EPC but the agent also has a responsibility to ensure an EPC has been ordered prior to marketing and that one is returned within the relevant timescales.
- There is a penalty of up to £200 for non compliance and an EPC will still be required.
There are various exemptions such as stand-alone buildings of less than 50m2, buildings due to be demolished, temporary buildings and listed buildings but most rented properties do not fall within these categories.
However, properties that are rented out for less than 4 months in any twelve month period are exempt.
What about New Builds?
New Build EPCs are created from plans and the building specification but can only be produced once the property is complete. During construction and before completion, a predicted energy assessment (PEA) can be produced and needs to be used in place of the EPC.
Holiday homes or an annexe
Do you rent a holiday home? If so, the rules apply if it is rented out for more than 4 months in any 12 month period.
If you have an annexe designed to be used separately to the main property (in that it has its own living facilities including bathroom, cooking facilities, a bedroom and own access) then it will need a separate EPC.
Residential properties within a commercial property
If a residential dwelling is accessed from a commercial building then one commercial EPC will be required for the whole building. However, if the dwelling has separate access then a commercial EPC will be required for the commercial unit and a domestic EPC for the dwelling.
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