A Domestic Energy Performance Certificate (commonly called an EPC) is required when you build, rent or sell a residential property. You must order an EPC for potential buyers and tenants before you market your property to sell or rent.
An EPC may also be required to take advantage of certain schemes. One common example is to claim feed-in tariff (FIT) payments.
In Scotland, you must also display the EPC somewhere in the property, e.g. in the meter cupboard or next to the boiler.
Some buildings don’t need an EPC however these regulations have been devolved and so different rules apply in different administrations.
Currently, in England and Wales, exemptions are in place for buildings that are:
- temporary buildings that will be used for less than 2 years
- stand-alone buildings with total useful floor space of less than 50m²
- some buildings that are due to be demolished
- holiday accommodation that’s rented out for less than 4 months a year or is let under a licence to occupy
- some listed buildings – you should get advice from your local authority conservation officer if the work would alter the building’s character and read our FAQ “Are Listed Buildings Exempt?”
- residential buildings intended to be used less than 4 months a year
In Scotland different regulations apply which are much more limited. The exemptions currently in place are for:
- temporary buildings with a planned time of use of two years or less
Caution: Do not rely on an exemption without taking specialist advice. Many of these exemptions have specific definitions which are not as obvious as they first seem and the consequences of getting it wrong can be significant!