Energy Performance Certificates

An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is intended to tell you and potential buyers how energy efficient a house is and make recommendations on how to improve the properties energy performance. An EPC is now legally required for selling a residential property in England and Wales

Representation of an EPC graph

Following the suspension of HIPs by the Coalition government the Energy Performance of Buildings (Certificates and Inspections) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2010 introduce a number of new requirements relating to the requirement of an EPC including: a new duty on the seller to secure that an energy performance certificate (EPC) has been commissioned before marketing of the property commences. Where no such certificate is already available;

  1. an EPC has been commissioned when a Domestic Energy Assessor has been instructed to prepare the EPC and the EPC has either been paid for or has given a clear undertaking to pay for it;
  2. a new duty on the person acting on behalf of the seller to be satisfied that an EPC has been commissioned before commencing marketing;
  3. a new duty on both the seller and a person acting on their behalf to make reasonable efforts to secure an EPC within 7 days.
  4. all of the new duties carry fixed penalties where somebody fails in the duty conferred on them by the new regulations

When you instruct Reeds Rains to market your property you will be given the opportunity to purchase an EPC. Alternatively you can call Reeds Rains direct on 0844 499 8112 or email epc@reedsrains.co.uk to purchase one.

Frequently Asked Questions

For more information on EPCs, we’ve provided a simple set of frequently asked questions.

  • What do you mean by “commissioned an EPC”?

    This means that a seller or a person acting on their behalf, i.e. an estate agent, must have instructed an accredited Energy Assessor to carry out an energy performance assessment.

  • Who or what is an Energy Assessor?

    This is someone who is accredited (regulated) to provide energy assessments on buildings.

  • Whose duty is it to provide the EPC?

    The duty to provide an EPC falls on the seller.

  • When does the EPC have to be provided?

    The full EPC should be available for an interested buyer/tenant at the earliest opportunity and no later than viewing (only for property new to the market after 6th April).

  • What is the penalty for not providing an EPC; who will enforce it?

    There is a fixed penalty of £200. Enforcement of these requirements is the responsibility of Trading Standards Officers. There are also penalties for not complying with the duty to commission an EPC before putting the property on the market.

  • How do I get a copy of the EPC done on my home? I never received a copy of my HIP.

    If you have had a HIP prepared on your home, the person who prepared your HIP should be able to provide you with a copy of the EPC.

  • Can I reuse the EPC I received in the HIP when I come to sell my home if it (the EPC) is more than 3 years old?

    Yes. Following the suspension of HIPs, all EPCs will be valid for 10 years.

  • Can I still rely on the HIP produced for the home I am buying?

    Yes. There is no reason why a buyer cannot rely on the documents contained in the HIP

  • I know there was a HIP produced for the house I am buying but the agent is now refusing to provide a copy. Is that right?

    Yes. There is no longer a duty on estate agents to provide a copy of the HIP to potential buyers.

  • Will an EPC still be needed after the suspension of HIPs?

    Yes. Sellers will need to have commissioned but not necessarily received an Energy Performance Certificate before marketing can start. Estate agents cannot start marketing until they are satisfied that an EPC is available or has been commissioned.

  • Agents will also have to include energy information in written particulars, as was the case before the suspension of HIPs. They must do so as soon as the energy information becomes available

  • Who will be responsible for providing the EPC?

    The duty to provide an EPC falls on either the seller, in the case of a building being sold, or the landlord, in the case of a building being rented. In the case of new buildings the duty to provide an EPC falls on the builder.

  • Where is the legislation on EPCs contained?

    The legislation is contained in the Energy Performance of Buildings (Certificates and Inspections) (England and Wales) Regulations 2007 (as amended by the Energy Performance of Buildings (Certificates and Inspections) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2010).

  • What are the penalties for non-compliance?

    The penalty for not ensuring that an EPC is available or has been commissioned and failing to include energy information in written particulars is £200. The enforcement of these requirements is the responsibility of Trading Standards Officers

  • How long will the EPC be valid for if it is not part of a HIP?

    All EPCs for all buildings are valid for 10 years from the date that they are prepared.

  • What about the requirement to include energy information in written particulars?

    The duty to include energy information in written particulars has been retained. It arises once an EPC has been obtained.

  • Is there a time limit on this?

    The seller and estate agent must use all reasonable efforts to ensure that the EPC is available

  • Will estate agents have any HIP duties once they are suspended?

    No but there will be duties under the EPB Regulations for agents to ensure that an EPC has been commissioned before marketing starts and to include the rating in written particulars when available.

  • Can buyers still rely on a HIP after the suspension date?

    Yes. If the HIP was compliant with the regulations there is no reason why a buyer should not be able to trust it.