Property people get ready for new EPC rules

Property people get ready for new EPC rules

17:31 PM, 21st February 2012, About 12 years ago 46

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Landlords and letting agents must comply with a streamlined energy performance certificate scheme from April.

The government has given the green light to the new rules that bring EPC requirements for selling and letting residential and commercial property into line.

From April 6, all properties need a valid EPC certificate before marketing to let or for sale – and agents must be ‘satisfied’ a survey is booked before advertising the property.

The new regulations arm trading standards officers with powers to demand files from an agent to examine evidence an EPC was ordered before marketing.

The EPC should be available within seven days of marketing and a copy of the front page should be attached to all marketing particulars – including those available in print, online and email.

Prospective tenants and buyers are entitled to see a full copy of the EPC when viewing a property.

A more flexible time limit of up to 28 days is offered to complex commercial surveys.

EPC design also changes – the new certificate replaces complicated graphs on the front page with clearer information about the property’s energy costs and any measures that could be taken to cut them.

The top three tips for energy-saving improvements will be listed.

Homes or commercial property already on the market with an old-style EPC before April 6 do not need to buy a new certificate.

Failing to comply with the new regulations could cost landlords or agents fines up to £200 for homes or 12.5% of the rateable value with a minimum £500 and maximum £5,000 for commercial property.

Download more information from Energy Performance of Buildings (Certificates and Inspections) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2011

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Michael Bond

17:10 PM, 23rd February 2012, About 12 years ago

Does this mean we have now got to go and get "new style" EPCs to replace "old style"ones already held?  The old ones were supposed to be valid for 10 years.  This matters for professional landlords and similar who have to produce an EPC each time we let a property, and for those involved in holiday cottages, the self-catering sector, who also have to do so.  This is yet more ridiculous and pointless bureaucracy originating with the EU and being gold plated by vested interests in Whitehall.

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

17:29 PM, 23rd February 2012, About 12 years ago

Hi Michael

To quote from the article "Homes or commercial property already on the market with an old-style EPC before April 6 do not need to buy a new certificate."

My understanding is that old style EPC's which you already have are still valid for the original 10 year period and that a new EPC is not required.

13:19 PM, 24th February 2012, About 12 years ago

I hope the new EPC do not have running costs on.  The issue being that the running costs can
look different between properties just because the EPCs were done in different
years, hence use different gas prices!

Why can there not be a website with ALL EPCs on it, and then
you could just link to your EPC on that website.   The website could then also show running
costs using current Gas prices.

9:56 AM, 3rd March 2012, About 12 years ago

The EPC has always had estimated running costs on the front page, it's just that buyers and tenants never got offered the certificates so never saw them... Probably a large part of the reason for the changes.

Currently an EPC must be less than 10 years old when a property is marketed, or there is a change of occupation. This could change in the future, as there is no expiry date on the certificate, just a start date. The government could change the regulations easily to say that a certificate must be less than five years old, or three... Or one. No plans yet, but could happen if energy efficiency becomes a larger part of buying or renting a house.

Finally, the new EPC is mainly to provide a key for Green Deal funding, due in October this year. Although you will not need a new EPC to market a property, you will need a new style EPC if you wish to apply for a 'Green Deal'.

Hope this helps to answer some questions!

Mary Latham

11:18 AM, 3rd March 2012, About 12 years ago

I will publish a piece on what the changes will mean to landlords in reality next week.  As EPC Info has said the EPC is a major part of energy efficiency and it is a tool which will be used by Government to reduce our carbon footprint by reducing the use of fossil fuels used in our homes. Landlords are seen as major players and we all need to take on board the fact that this is not going to go away.
Whether Landlords have shown their EPC's to tenants or not the information gathered is now on record and will be used when decisions are made about the future contribution of the PRS in the fight to reduce greenhouse gases

12:19 PM, 3rd March 2012, About 12 years ago

You could try this

Doug Green

14:00 PM, 4th March 2012, About 12 years ago

I'm giving a tenant (in residence since 2003) a new AST Agreement because the current one shows a Letting Agent, whom I no longer use, as the Landlord. Therefore its not marketed, there's no change in occupant, and no change to the terms/conditions.

I'm going to give him the deposit back to avoid the associated inconvenience, but do I need an EPC?

Many thanks - Doug

Mark Alexander - Founder of Property118

16:39 PM, 4th March 2012, About 12 years ago

That's a very interesting conundrum Doug, I would get one just to be cautious but I really don't know the answer. Let's hope one of the EPC specialists here come back and confirm the proper position.

Mary Latham

18:09 PM, 4th March 2012, About 12 years ago

You do not need an EPC until you "market" a property for rent to find new tenants

21:56 PM, 4th March 2012, About 12 years ago

This is generally a grey area, with some letting agents playing safe and ordering an EPC if a new AST is going to be issued, although I am cynical enough to believe that has more to do with their referral fee than any green leanings!

As an energy assessor, I think that there is not a change of tenancy so there is no need for an EPC.

Be aware (as I have mentioned before) that if you want to take advantage of green deal funding you will need a new style EPC, and also that in years to come it will be against the law to let out a property which is rated either F or G... If you think that might be the case, you might be better off knowing sooner rather than later!

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