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The Legislation and The Facts

Why are EPC's required?

Energy Performance Certificates have come into being as a direct result of The European Directive on the Energy Performance of Buildings (EPBD).  The objective of the Directive on the Energy Performance of buildings is to promote the energy performance of buildings within the European Community taking into account outdoor climatic and local conditions as well as indoor climate requirements and cost-effectiveness.
An EPC is intended to inform potential buyers or tenants about the energy performance of a building, so they can consider energy efficiency as part of their investment or business decision to buy or occupy the building.

What is an EPC and what does it mean?

The EPC looks broadly similar to the energy labels now provided with vehicles and many household appliances.  Its purpose is to indicate how energy efficient a building is.  The certificate will provide an energy rating from A to G, where A is very efficient and G is the least efficient.  The better the rating, the more energy -efficient the building is, and the lower the fuel bills are likely to be.  The energy performance of the building is shown as a Carbon Dioxide (CO2) based index.

Each energy rating is based on the characteristics of the building itself and its services (such as heating and lighting).  Hence this type of rating is known as an asset rating.  The asset ratings will reflect considerations including the age and condition of the building.  It is accompanied by a recommendation report, which provides recommendations on using the building more effectively, cost effective improvements to the building and other more expensive improvements which could enhance the building's energy performance.

Responsibilities for providing an EPC:

1. On construction or modification of a Non-Dwelling
When a building being constructed is physically complete, it is the responsibility of the person carrying out the construction to give an EPC and recommendation report to the building owner and to notify Building Control that this has been done.  Building Control will not issue a certificate of completion until they are satisfied this has been done.

If a building is modified to have more or fewer parts than it originally had and the modification includes the provision or extension of fixed services for heating, air conditioning or mechanical ventilation then an EPC will be required.  When the modifications are physically complete, it is the responsibility of the person carrying out the modification works to give an EPC and recommendation report to the building owner and to notify Building Control that this has been done.

2. When selling or letting a Non-Dwelling
As soon as a building is in the process of being offered for sale or to let, it is the responsibility of the seller or Landlord to make an EPC available to prospective buyers or tenants free of charge.

Energy Performance on building (Certificates and Inspection) Regulation (Northern Ireland) 2009
Amendments to the above legislation identity changes which will directly affect you as an agent marketing property for sale or rent.
The amendment will make it a legal requirement from the 9th Jan 2013 for estate agents (or anyone marketing a property for sale or rent) to display the A-9 EPC graph on each brochure for all properties in their portfolio. In circumstances when the size and type of advertisement would render this impractical, a combination of the letter and numeric rating must be used instead e.g. EPC F36
It will be the responsibility of the person marketing the property to ensure that the energy performance indictor is included in the commercial media for a building. Failure to do so may result in the formal enforcement procedures which may lead to a penalty notice fine being issued to those marketing a property for sale or rent.
This will apply to properties currently on the market when the legislation becomes operational for any properties that do not have an EPC you may wish to advise the property owner / landlord of the impending amendments.



Association of Residential Letting Agents ARLA National Association of Estate Agents NAEA Stroma Certified Energy Assessor Elmhurst Accredited Energy Assessor The Association of Professional Inventory Providers
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