First introduced in 2007 as part of the now-abolished Home Information Pack, an energy performance rating is necessary for properties being sold or rented in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
In 2012 EPCs were updated and simplified to support the Green Deal, making up part of its assessment. The Green Deal was introduced to help homeowners make energy-saving improvements to their property. The EPC is valid for ten years and the survey of the property will usually take between 45 minutes and an hour.
The most efficient homes – which should have the lowest fuel bills – are in band A. The Certificate also tells you, on a scale of A-G, about the impact the home has on the environment. Better-rated homes should have less impact through Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions.
The average property in the UK is in bands D-E for both ratings. The Certificate includes recommendations on ways to improve the home’s energy efficiency to save you money and help the environment. EPCs apply also to commercial buildings and are rated only by Carbon Dioxide emission ratings on a scale of A-G.
The energy efficiency rating given through Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) is used as a proxy for the energy efficiency of a dwelling. EPCs thus become a good indicator of the willingness-to-pay for energy efficiency.
The EPC also will give an indication of how much it will cost to heat and power their home. Details are also listed on potential savings that could be made should you improve the energy efficiency of their household running costs.
The Energy Performance Certificate is designed to help homeowners reduce the environmental impact of their homes. It can act as a useful guide to help you work out which areas to focus on first when improving their home’s efficiency. The Energy Savings Trust estimates that following the recommendations in an Energy Performance Certificate, an average of £300 a year can be saved in fuel bills.
EPCs on property values and overcoming obstacles in the wider use of EPCs across the EU.
For instance, in some countries, EPCs are not yet mandatory at all stages of real estate use (e. g. design, primary market release, secondary market transactions, and renovations). In those countries, where EPCs are already mandatory, this requirement might be better fulfilled if EPCs would be also requested by lawyers/notaries as proof of real estate transactions.
Bureaucratic hurdles in issuing EPCs should be reduced while at the same time the evaluation of Energy Performance Certificates in terms of reliability should be improved. On top, improved training and qualifying of the certifiers as well as proper quality control would increase the reliability and credibility of EPCs.
These suggestions for the improvement of the EPC scheme could either be enacted voluntarily via national models or through the expected recast of the EPBD on the European Union level in 2017/2018.