Mortgage360 Logo

Call Us

0330 122 5022

Email Us

hello@mortgage360.co.uk

How to Get a Copy of My EPC Certificate?

An example EPC Certificate

Most homes today need an Energy Performance Certificate EPC. If you’re planning on selling or renting out your buy-to-let property, then since 2008 an EPC has been a legal requirement to confirm a property’s energy efficiency.

Beware, if you fail to comply, then you could be hit with a hefty fine of up to £5,000!

Your property may already have an EPC registered, so we’ll cover below how you search for it. Alternatively, you might need to commission one through a qualified EPC assessor – that’s a straightforward process too.

What is an EPC certificate?

An Energy Performance Certificate is a document detailing exactly how energy efficient a property is. This four-page document rates the energy performance of the property and also provides guidance on the anticipated heating and power costs as well as carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

If you’re buying a property, it’s a very useful guide to indicate costs and potential savings in energy terms.

The EPC uses a traffic-light colour-coded system to rate the energy performance of the property on a scale of A to G. A is the highest rating and G is the polar opposite. The property is also rated with a numerical scale from 1 to 100, where higher figures indicate better performance.

An example EPC Certificate

Image courtesy of Uswitch

The EPC is useful because it not only gives you a current score but also a potential score, indicating where you could improve and save money with a few affordable energy-efficient upgrades. Examples include changing to LED lighting or maybe installing loft insulation.

Do you need to obtain an EPC certificate legally?

Since 2008 (2009 in Scotland) any property which is being bought, sold or let out needs an EPC to provide the potential buyer or tenant accurate information on the energy performance rating of the building.

Obtaining an EPC is easy; there may be an existing and valid certificate for the property or you may need to ask an accredited assessor to carry out an EPC survey.

A valid EPC is proof the property has been assessed to establish its baseline energy efficiency. Each EPC is valid for 10 years, but if you carry out significant improvements to the property to enhance its sustainability potential, you can recommission a new EPC at any time.

What are the benefits of having one?

So what are the benefits of having an EPC?

  • An EPC enables you to identify where energy-efficient upgrades can be carried out to reduce energy consumption and associated costs.
  • A positive, highly-rated EPC can increase the appeal of your property to potential buyers or tenants.
  • EPC certificates play a role in helping to improve the built environment.

Properties that don’t need an EPC certificate

There are a few exceptions to the rule, for properties that don’t require a valid EPC certificate.

  • Properties on the Listed Buildings Register (Grades 1 and 2)
  • A temporary building which will be in use for less than two years
  • Places of worship (churches etc)
  • Buildings with a total floor area of less than 50m2
  • Buildings using only small amounts of energy, such as workshops and agricultural buildings
  • Holiday homes used for less than four months each year

Where do I get a copy of my existing EPC certificate?

The property you are considering may already have a valid EPC to confirm the property’s energy efficiency. You can check on the government EPC register to find an existing EPC.

It helps if you have the RRN (Report Reference Number) for the property, but don’t worry if you don’t. The EPC register website allows you to search by postcode, by street/road name and by town too.

The website allows you to find the following:-

  • A valid energy performance certificate (EPC)
  • A display energy certificate (DEC) (these cover public buildings)
  • An air conditioning inspection certificate and report

How can I get a new EPC certificate?

If there isn’t an existing and valid EPC for the property, you need to arrange for an accredited EPC assessor to carry out the necessary survey to issue one.

Again, there is a government website to help with this.

How much will it cost?

Remember to check first if your property requires an EPC; there are some significant exceptions, including listed buildings.

How much you will have to pay will depend upon the size of the property assessed, and the assessor you choose. Expect to pay between £60 – £120, but it’s worth ringing round a few assessors to ensure you get the best quote.

Once the assessment is complete, your assessor will provide you with a digital copy of the EPC within a couple of days, which you can view, save and/or print out.

How long is it valid for?

An EPC is valid for 10 years, so it will cover any property sales and lets during that period. However, as already explained, if you carry out work to improve the energy efficiency rating of the property, it may well be worth the money and commissioning a new EPC to increase the appeal for future buyers or tenants in terms of potential energy costs.

What will the assessor look at?

The EPC inspection covers a set number of areas and issues.

Expect your assessor to want to access every area of the entire property to complete a detailed domestic energy assessment.

The questions your assessor will address are:-

  • How old is your property and what style of construction is it?
  • What is the size of the property?
  • What are the primary heating systems, controls and energy efficiency ratings?
  • What insulation measures are in place?
  • Are there any renewable energy sources?
  • Are there energy-saving light bulbs in place?
  • Are the windows and doors double (or triple) glazed?

Based on these questions and assessments, the necessary calculations will be made and you will be provided with an accurate and up-to-date EPC. Most assessors will also give you hints and tips on how to further improve your property’s energy-efficient rating.

Age, Construction and Size of Property

The EPC assessor will take note of the age of the building, the type of construction (brick, stone etc), total floor area and other details such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms. They will also assess the property for any defects (dampness etc).

Insulation

They will check for adequate insulation, including under the floor in the loft and in the walls.

Primary Heating Systems

They will assess your primary heating system(s) and temperature controls, and rate these based on energy efficiency.

Secondary Heating Sources

If you have any secondary heating sources such as solar panels, these will also be taken into account for the EPC rating.

Windows

The EPC assessor will look at the size and condition of your windows and doors, and assess their condition and sealing efficacy to avoid gaps and draughts that could impact upon your energy efficiency. Double and ideally triple glazing will help.

Lighting

They will also check your light fitments to see what type of bulbs you have installed to rate your energy performance.

How long does the assessment take?

This will depend upon the size of your property and the complexity of your heat and power sources. Generally, an average EPC certificate assessment will take around an hour. You will not be expected to assist the energy assessor unless they need help accessing different parts of the property; lofts, cellars etc.

The result is not immediate; it is unlikely you will receive your EPC certificate and EPC rating on the same day, as there are several calculations to complete to compile the document and decide your final EPC rating following your EPC assessment.

Can you fail the assessment?

No. This is not a pass or fail situation but an assessment. However, it is worth mentioning rental properties must achieve an E rating at the very least indicating the minimum energy efficiency standards. The government is currently looking to increase this requirement but there is no set date for this to happen.

If the property fails to reach this standard, then landlords must invest to improve the rating. They will not be required to spend more than £3,500; if the property still fails to reach the required level, they can then apply for an exemption.

When will I receive the certificate?

Your energy assessor will compile the report and then send it on to the governing authority. Submission usually takes place within 24-48 hours, following which energy performance certificates will be live on the EPC register website.

More complex commercial EPCs may take a little longer. Your assessor will advise you.

How does all this affect my Mortgage?

Lenders are trying to do their bit for the environment and some will actively reward customers with properties deemed to be energy efficient, typically with an A-B or A-C EPC rating. They incentivise and reward new customers with properties that are emitting a smaller carbon footprint with a cheaper mortgage deal, known simply in the industry as a ‘Green Mortgage’.

What is a Green Mortgage?

At the moment a small number of mortgage lenders have a separate product range which is generally referred to as a ‘Green Mortgage’.

It is expected that this new concept will continue to grow in the future, as more and more lenders adopt the same principles to be seen as responsible and ethical lenders of choice.

If your property qualifies for a ‘Green Mortgage’ then simply put, you can expect a slightly cheaper rate of interest than that of a property which does not meet the definition and/or you could receive a cash-back payment from the lender.

For existing properties, they will need to prove that their EPC rating is still valid against the Government register. In the case of a new build, the PEA (Predicted Energy Assessment) rating, if available and confirmed by the Surveyor.

For professional Landlords, some lenders will offer a ‘Green Mortgage’ to join them. For example, if you are seeking to raise funds through them to make the subject property more energy efficient to improve the rating. This could be by investing in home improvements, such as new windows, new doors, loft insulation, and installing a new boiler or heat source pump.

In summary

So if you’re planning on selling or renting out a property, it’s important to establish whether it needs an Energy Performance Certificate or already has one. Organising an EPC assessment is quick and easy, and it will give you important guidance on the energy efficiency of your property and simple steps you can take to improve this. We’re on hand to advise, contact Mortgage360 if you have any questions about mortgages and property.

Mortgage360 is here for all your property needs.

The information contained within this article was correct at the time of publication but is subject to change.

Your home may be repossessed if you do not keep up repayments on your mortgage.

Matt Illingworth

Matt has been advising since 2010 and prides himself on helping people secure their dream home, simplifying the process for his clients and supporting them every step of the way. Matt has a strong, long-term client based philosophy where his clients are his number one priority. When he is not helping his clients, Matt enjoys spending family time with his son Lucca, following football, listening to guitar music and planning lots of sunny holidays!