What is an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) and Why do I Need One?

Written on 7 June 2021 by Courtney Manton in Frequently Asked Questions


You’ll need an energy performance certificate before you can sell or rent your property. Knowing what an EPC is and the data it contains can help you obtain valuable information about a property before you buy it or improve the energy efficiency of a property you live in or rent out.

nergy performance certificate

What is an EPC?

An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) scores the energy efficiency of a domestic property on a scale of A to G. It gives potential buyers or tenants an idea of how costly it will be to heat and light the property and what its carbon dioxide emissions are likely to be.

An EPC also highlights how the property could be made more energy-efficient. Even if you rent your home, you could still implement some recommendations, such as switching to energy-efficient light bulbs.

EPCs are valid for ten years.

Why do I need an EPC?

Your property’s EPC needs to be available to potential buyers or tenants as soon as you start to market your property.

If you are buying or renting a new home, an EPC certificate allows you to compare the energy efficiency of properties on your shortlist.

An EPC can be beneficial even if you are not selling or renting out your home. Homes account for almost 30% of carbon dioxide emissions in the UK; reducing this is vital to tackle climate change. The recommendations in your EPC report will enable you to make your home more environmentally friendly and reduce your fuel bills.

Who needs to get an EPC?

Anyone selling their home will need to have an Energy Performance Certificate before they market their property.

It is a legal requirement for all landlords to have an EPC rating of E or above before letting their properties.

What is checked during an EPC inspection?

To get an EPC for your home you will need to have your property inspected by an approved assessor. The gov.uk website can help you find an assessor in your local area.

It takes less than one hour to carry out an internal and external inspection of most domestic properties. The inspector will need access to all the rooms in the property, including the loft space. During the inspection, your assessor will inspect or measure the following:

  • Exterior walls
  • Roof insulation
  • Floor
  • Windows
  • Open fireplaces
  • Boiler
  • Lighting
  • Heating system
  • Heating controls
  • Hot water cylinder insulation
  • Ventilation system
  • Conservatory and extensions

What can I expect to see on my EPC?

Your property will be given an energy efficiency score which is displayed on a chart like the one below. The higher the figure in the current column, the more energy-efficient your property is. The figure in the potential column is based on the recommendations later in the report.

An EPC also states the actual and potential CO2 output for the property.

Each aspect of the property that is assessed is listed in the report and given a rating of very good, good, average, poor or very poor.

Following this, there is a list of recommended changes to improve the property’s energy efficiency. An estimate of the installation cost and annual savings are included.

There also an estimate of how much an average household would spend on heating, lighting and hot water. This is not based on the energy consumption of the current occupants of the property.

How do I get a copy of my EPC?

You can easily find a properties EPC from the government’s register as long as you have either the properties address or the EPC certificate number.

How can I improve my EPC?

In Belgravia, properties with an EPC rating of C are typically worth 15% more than a similar property with an EPC rating of E – another incentive to improve your EPC rating.

The ratings are based on the number of Standard Assessment Procedure points a property scores during the EPC inspection.

For a property to achieve an A rating, it needs 92-100 SAP points. Homes with a B rating have 81-91 SAP points, C-rated homes have 69-80 SAP points, while E-rated homes need to score only 39-54 SAP points.

Extra SAP points are earned by making energy-efficient improvements. Fitting a modern condensing boiler, for example, will earn a property 47 SAP points and elevate it into the E-rating band immediately.

However, other forms of energy-efficient improvements do not carry as much weight when it comes to a property’s EPC rating. Installing double glazing is worth only 4 SAP points, upgrading roof insulation earns 10 SAP points, while cavity wall insulation adds 13 to a home’s SAP points total.

For an up-to-date valuation of your property’s rental and sale value in Belgravia, Knightsbridge, Mayfair, Pimlico, South Kensington or Westminster, contact Best Gapp today.

Courtney Manton

Courtney is a Chartered Surveyor, the senior partner and owner of the Best Gapp group.

His special talent honed over the last 30 years is winning. Winning for his many clients.

Winning a Leasehold Enfranchisement case, winning a negotiation to sell or buy, winning a lower rent at review, winning a planning permission to enhance value, winning trust.

All articles by Courtney Manton

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