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What is an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?

An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is a detailed document showing the energy efficiency of a specific property. The document indicates how efficient the unit is at keeping energy costs low and withholding heat / energy. An EPC has a lifespan of 10 years and after which it should be renewed to ensure that it complies with UK law. An EPC is rated from A (Highest energy efficiency rate attainable) to G (Lowest energy efficiency rate possible). It is a legal requirement to have a valid EPC with a rating of E or above (for rental properties only). It is also a legal requirement to have a valid EPC when selling your property.

The Compliance
From the 1st April 2018; renting a property with an efficiency rating below E became illegal in the UK. Any property with an energy rating of F or G therefore does not comply and cannot be rented out. For property owner with energy ratings below E, they’re required to make the necessary upgrades to their property meet the minimum standard and continue renting their rental property. This can be done by taking several steps ranging from increasing the insulation in the property (loft, floor and cavity insulation) or installing energy saving light bulbs in each room.

 

As a result of the insufficient energy rating you may face several penalties including;

A £2000 fine for failing to comply with the new law despite the call by the authority for you to do so.
A £1000 in case you provided false information to exemption register and it is later detected that you lied to insulate your property from the new law.
A hefty fine ranging from £2000 to £4000 for renting out property which doesn’t comply with the minimum required standards. £2000 is charged for doing so for less than 3 months, otherwise, you’ll be fined £4000 for it.
There are occasions when your property may not require an EPC, such as it being a listed building.