What is an EPC Certificate and Why Do You Need One?

If you're planning to sell your property, you need to understand Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs). These important documents provide details about a property’s energy use and typical energy costs. Since 2008, EPCs have been legally required, similar to gas safety certificates.

Let's break down everything you need to know about EPCs, if you have further questions feel free to reach out to the team at Chewton Rose.

What is an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?

Think of an EPC like the energy efficiency sticker on new appliances, it rates properties from A (most efficient) to G (least efficient), indicating how expensive it is to heat or cool the home.

An EPC contains:

  • Information on a property's energy use
  • Typical energy costs
  • Recommendations to improve energy efficiency

If you’re a landlord or selling a property, you must get this certificate before listing the property. If you have a valid EPC from when you purchased the property, you might be able to use that.

You can view EPCs for any property on the national EPC register.

Do I Need an EPC?

Yes, since 2008, it’s a legal requirement to have an EPC when selling or renting out a property, this applies to commercial properties as well.

However, there are some exceptions:

  • A rented room within a house (a self-contained flat within a larger house with its own front door and facilities does need one)
  • Some types of listed buildings
  • Properties that cannot be modified to improve energy efficiency

How Much Does an EPC Cost?

You shouldn’t be charged for an EPC when buying or renting a property, it should be provided for free by the seller or landlord (or their agent).

If you want an EPC for personal use to manage energy consumption, you’ll have to pay for it. Prices range from £35 to £120, so it's worth getting a few quotes.

What Information is displayed on an EPC?

An EPC resembles the multi-coloured stickers you see on household appliances, it includes:

  • An energy efficiency rating
  • Estimated costs of running your home
  • A summary of energy performance features

The energy efficiency rating ranges from A to G, older properties without energy-saving upgrades typically score around D. Landlords must achieve at least an E rating or face penalties up to £4,000.

The summary of energy performance features helps identify which areas of your home are most and least efficient, use this to prioritize improvements.

Who Can Carry Out an EPC?

An accredited domestic energy assessor can issue an EPC. Estate or letting agents can find one for you, but you can also search for assessors in your area on the EPC Register.

Selling or Letting a Property?

If you have a property to sell or let, Chewton Rose can help you get it market-ready. Check out our detailed guide to the lettings process, find an agent in your nearest branch, or get in touch today.

Understanding EPCs is crucial for property sellers and landlords. Not only is it a legal requirement, but it also provides valuable insights into your property’s energy efficiency, helping you make informed decisions to reduce energy costs and improve marketability.