Check Your Eligibilty

January 24, 2024

What is an EPC and how long does it last? Find out all you need to know in this article.

An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is a document that tells what the energy efficiency of a building is. Buildings are usually rated from A to G where A means that the building is highly energy efficient and G being the least.

What an EPC does is that it determines how much a property will be warmer in the cold winter months. With your EPC you can also determine your electricity bills and how quickly a property can be sold to potential buyers. Buildings with higher EPC will be more attractive to prospective buyers and have reduced energy bills.

An A-rated property will have the most modern energy-efficient equipment installed including central heating system, insulation, heat pumps, etc.

how long does an epc last

How Long Will My EPC Last?

Having known what an EPC is, it is important to also know for how long this certificate is valid.

An Energy Performance Certificates is valid for 10 years and tells us how much energy a building consumes for heating, lighting and the impact on the environment.

Currently, every UK building should have a minimum EPC rating of E. However, it is expected that things will change very soon because of the new rules coming from the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES).

These new rules suggest that newly rented homes should have a minimum EPC rating of at least C in 2025. As a projection, this may affect around 60% of privately rented homes. For older homes, they have until 2028 to increase the EPC rating of their homes to an EPC rating of C or more by 2028, or else the landlord will be fined.

An energy performance certificate costs between £35 and £120 which is very economical when compared to a fine fee of £5,000.

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How Difficult Is It to Get an EPC Rating?

As a matter of fact, it is not difficult to obtain an E rating for your building. You can get it by installing any of the following energy-efficient measures:

  • Gas central heating with a combi boiler

  • Double glazing

  • 600mm of insulation

  • Wall insulation

Besides these, you can also boost your building’s rating up to an E by just installing low-energy lighting in all fixed outlets. It is actually easy to know the improvements to make because the EPC will contain recommendations to improve energy efficiency in the home.

Additionally, there are government grants that can help eligible households make energy-efficient improvements in their homes. You can also check if you qualify for these grants.

As soon as you have made the required improvements, you can then apply for a new EPC.

How Long Does It Take to Get an EPC?

Getting an EPC doesn’t take so much time. It takes about 40 minutes for a domestic EPC assessment and 45 minutes for a commercial assessment. This assessment differ based on the property. For instance, it can be a function of the size and nature of the building.

During assessment, a domestic energy assessor will access every room in the building including the loft. The same applies to any heating system, insulation, etc. within the property. Usually, snapshots of key measurements will be taken during the assessment but these will remain private.

Atleast 48-72 hours after assessment of your property, you can expect your EPC. A copy of your energy performance certificate is also available in the national register and you can look it up via the EPC search facility.

how long does an epc certificate last

What Information Does an EPC Contain?

Your EPC will be displayed somewhere on your property. An EPC contains information about the energy-saving measures already in use such as solar panels, insulation, etc. in a property as well as the estimated energy costs for the building based on the average usage of these measures.

EPCs also give recommendations on how to reduce your energy usage which will ultimately cut down on energy bills. For example, your EPC may recommend installing double glazing as a substitute to your existing windows which may reduce your annual energy bill by about £135.

When Do I Need an Energy Performance Certificate?

When building, selling, or renting out a property, you must obtain an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) for potential buyers or tenants. Besides being a legal requirement, an up-to-date EPC helps you to comply with MEES guidelines.

However, there are some exemptions as can be found in the EPC exemptions list but your property must have a minimum EPC rating of E.

Here are the exemptions;

  • ‘All Improvements Made’– This refers to when a property, even after making recommended improvements to increase energy efficiency, still falls short of the required standard.

  • ‘Devaluation’– In this case, a property will be exempted if its market value will see over 5% drop due to installation of energy efficient measures. Note that, only an independent surveyor from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) can make this decision of a drop in market value.

  • ‘High Cost’– Where recommended energy improvements costs more than £3,500 to purchase and install, you may be exempt.

  • ‘New Landlord’– Usually, every new landlord enjoys a six-month exemption as it is seen as not appropriate to have them comply with regulations immediately.

  • ‘Wall Insulation’– You may be exempted if the property cannot accommodate any kind of wall insulation.

In addition, there are buildings that do not need an EPC and they include the following;

  • Worship places

  • Short term buildings to be used no more than 2 years

  • Buildings that a due to be razed down

  • Workshops, industrial sites as well as non-residential agricultural buildings which consume minimal energy

  • Residential buildings for short stay (less than 4 months a year). Additionally, holiday accommodation for rent for less than 4 months a year.

  • Buildings standing alone and having a total useful floor space of less than 50 square metres.

Summing Up

In the UK, EPC validity is pegged at ten years. However, if you make improvements in your home before your current certificate expires, you must acquire a new EPC. This helps to indicate any new changes made.

Remember that the higher your EPC rating, the more desirable it is for potential buyers. You will also be free from the risk of fines coming from non-compliance.

For more information on energy performance certificates, contact us at today. Simply fill out our contact form and we will be happy to provide answers to all your queries.

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