Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) present a building's energy efficiency in the form of an 'asset rating'. This is similar to the system used to rate white goods, such as fridges and washing machines.
You must commission an EPC if you sell, rent out, construct or refurbish most buildings. EPCs are not required for buildings that are not normally considered as homes, such as:
- places of worship
- temporary buildings with a planned period of use of less than two years
- buildings using low amounts of energy, eg barns
- certain homes which are to be demolished
When domestic properties are marketed for sale, the EPC forms a compulsory element of the Home Information Pack (HIP). The EPC must be made available free of charge when the property is marketed for sale.
Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) are issued by energy assessors belonging to a government approved accreditation scheme. EPCs quantify a building's calculated potential energy performance in the form of an 'asset rating', which is presented in a form similar to the system used to rate white goods - such as fridges and washing machines.
If you are buying or renting business premises, looking at EPCs enables you to consider energy efficiency and potential energy costs.
Prospective buyers or tenants must receive an EPC before they buy from a seller, let or sublet. Owners of newly built or refurbished business property must receive an EPC before they accept a property from a builder.
EPCs are needed for buildings with multiple tenancies and let for different uses, with a mixture of retail, office and/or residential accommodation.
EPCs are not needed for:
- lease renewals or extensions
- compulsory purchase orders
- sales of shares in a company where buildings remain in company ownership
- lease surrenders
- temporary buildings with a planned time of use less than two years
- standalone buildings with a total useful floor area of less than 50 metres squared that are not dwellings
- industrial sites, workshops and non-residential agricultural buildings with low energy demand
Selling or letting an existing business property
For the sale or rent of an existing property, it is the owner or landlord who is responsible for providing an EPC to any prospective buyer or tenant. This should be done no later than the day on which a viewing is carried out, or written information is provided about the premises. An EPC must be provided when a contract to sell or let premises is arranged - at the very latest.
Existing occupiers and tenants will not require an EPC unless they sell, assign or sublet their interest.