It is a requirement that all private and social landlords provide an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) whenever they let a building to a new tenant. The landlord must provide an EPC free of charge to all prospective tenants at the earliest opportunity and must provide a copy to the person who takes up the tenancy.
EPCs show the energy performance of a building. This includes the energy efficiency rating (relating to running costs) and the environmental impact rating (relating to carbon dioxide emissions). Ratings are shown on a scale of A-G with A being the most efficient and G being the least efficient.
These ratings, together with a recommendation report which shows how to improve the property’s energy efficiency, form the basis of the EPC and the complete document must be given to new tenants. The recommended works do not have to be carried out but by doing so a new EPC can be issued which gives better ratings.
To get an EPC, landlords need to employ an accredited energy assessor. The cost of an EPC varies but should cost around £50.
EPCs are valid for 10 years and can be used as many times as needed.
An EPC is not required for properties occupied before 1 October 2008 which continue to be occupied after that date by the same tenant. However, the landlord may provide an EPC in this situation if they want to.
Trading standards enforce these regulations and it is an offence to fail to provide a certificate.
Houses in multiple occupation
Houses or buildings let on a single contract to a group of unrelated people require an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). However, where individual rooms in a house or building are let separately, an EPC is not required other than in specified circumstances.
An EPC is not required for halls of residence where individual tenants rent a room and share amenities, other than in specified circumstances.