An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is required whenever a building in the social or private rented sectors is let to a new tenant. Landlords must provide an EPC free of charge to prospective tenants at the earliest opportunity and must provide a copy of the EPC to the person who takes up the tenancy.
The Government has recently published a new guide for Landlords, which is available for download called 'Energy Performance certificate'. An example of what the certificate looks like is on page 8 of this document.
How do I get an EPC done?
What you need to do is find a Domestic Energy Assessor. We cannot make recommendations for businesses but a listing can be found at the EPC Register website, alternatively look in the Yellow Pages directory. They are listed under Energy Performance Certificates. Costs vary in the £35-100 range.
Is there anything else I need to think about?
Now is the time to get your energy improvements done. When you have your EPC carried out you will get a better rating, and therefore your property will be more attractive to potential tenants. Your EPC will safely last its 10 year life. If you put off your energy improvements, such as insulation, windows or efficient heating systems, you will need to pay for a new EPC when you do get things done, which will be some time in the next 10 years.
Private tenants (and prospective tenants)
When you enquire about a property, or sign up to a tenancy, your landlord must make available (free of charge) a copy of the energy Performance certificate, usually just called an 'EPC'. This will enable you to judge how energy efficient the property is and how much it will cost to run. If your landlord does not provide this certificate you should complain to Trading Standards. They will request the EPC and can ultimately issue a penalty notice of £200 as well as enforcing provision of the EPC. See what an EPC looks like.
To find out more about how to improve the standard of insulation or heating of your rented property, to reduce your energy costs, contact the Energy Saving Trust Advice Centre on 0800 512012. They will advise you about grants and subsidies to help tenants of private rented properties. Alternatively please visit our page on energy grants.