Energy Performance Certificates for buildings

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The Certificate

Who is responsible for obtaining the EPC?

It is the responsibility of:

  • the contractor to provide it to the owner of a newly-built building
  • the seller to make it available to the prospective purchaser
  • the prospective landlord to make it available to the prospective occupier

How long is the EPC valid for?

The EPC is valid for 10 years or until it is replaced with a newer one.

Do I need a new EPC every time I let/sell my building?

As long as a valid EPC exists for the building, you can provide this to prospective tenants. An EPC is valid for 10 years and during this period you can provide the same EPC to prospective tenants. This EPC will no longer be valid if a newer EPC has been obtained.

How can I check if my energy assessor is properly qualified?

The accreditation bodies ensure their members are properly qualified and competent to conduct assessments. If you wish to check the accreditation details of your assessor, you should contact their accreditation body who should be able to verify that they are accredited to practice as an energy assessor. The website only shows properly qualified and accredited energy assessors. You should check they are suitably qualified for the type of building being assessed.

How can you check your EPC is genuine?

Every EPC has a reference number on the top right hand side of the certificate. To check its authenticity, go to and enter the reference number into the register.

What happens if a building gets a low rating?

This simply indicates that the building could be more energy efficient. During the inspection, a number of recommendations to improve the energy efficiency will be identified.

Is it mandatory to make improvements on the recommendation report?

These are recommendations not requirements. It is up to the individual or company whether to implement the recommendations or not. Implementation of these recommendations could not only improve the rating and reduce carbon emissions but also save money on energy bills.


Are there any buildings exempt from providing EPCs?

The following buildings are exempt from requiring an EPC:

  • Places of worship,
  • Stand-alone buildings of less than 50 square metres (except for residential buildings)
  • Temporary buildings with a planned time of use of 2 years or less,
  • Particular buildings with low energy demand (e.g. barns).
  • In certain limited circumstances, buildings to be demolished are exempt from requiring a certificate.
  • Buildings which do not use energy to condition the indoor climate â?? i.e. those that do not have heating or ventilation (e.g. a car park that only has lighting).

The Assessment

How long will it take to perform an energy assessment?

The time taken to perform an energy assessment will vary according to the size and nature of the property. Due to the wide variation of commercial buildings, it is difficult to predict any â??average time’ to complete the assessment.

How much will it cost to perform an energy assessment?

The cost of performing an energy assessment will vary according to the size and nature of the property. Due to the wide variation of commercial buildings, it is difficult to predict a cost for the assessment.

How do you become an energy assessor?

An Energy Assessor will need to be a member of an approved accreditation scheme which shows that the assessor has met the appropriate National Occupational Standards and is fit to carry out energy assessments for the type of assessment*. This can be shown by:

  • Achieving a qualification in energy assessment
  • Demonstrating to the scheme that they can meet the Standards through prior experience

How long is accreditation valid?

Accreditation schemes will charge for accreditation annually, and will maintain regular quality assurance checks on the work their members do.

Who is responsible for enforcement?

Building control and trading standards divisions of local authorities are responsible for ensuring that, when required, buildings have an EPC.

Is it possible to appeal against the EPC rating?

It is possible to appeal against the rating by raising the issue with the assessor in the first instance, or escalating it to the scheme that your energy assessor is accredited with. All assessors must comply with minimum standards which have been set by the Government and the schemes must carry out quality assurance testing on EPCs.

*The types of assessment are:

  • Simple, existing commercial buildings (level 3)
  • New and existing commercial buildings (level 4)
  • New and existing complex commercial buildings (level 5)
  • Air conditioning inspections

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