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Thursday, January 19, 2017

EPCs - post BREXIT

EPC could go as a result of BREXIT

Landlords are familiar with their requirement to obtain an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) before trying to let their property.  Do I really need an EPC?

The EPC was one of those pointless bits of legislation introduced as part of a the European Directive on Energy efficiency in buildings Directive 2002/91/EC (EPBD, 2003) back in August 2007 as part of the equally pointless HIPs (now defunct and scrapped).

So could these pointless bits of paper be the first bit of European legislation to be thrown on the bonfire of regulations as Britain takes back it's control of law making as a result of Brexit? One hopes so...

EPC Lifespan

As it stands the EPC has a life span of 10 years and some landlords who originally obtained one just after the legislation was introduced will very soon  have to look to obtain an updated version.  Recently I was looking at letting my property which obviously involves getting my buy-to-let on Rightmove.  As part of the process of uploading photos and details (which I did incidentally at Manchester Airport as a waited for my flight to Dubai), there was one box about uploading the EPC. Yikes!  You know that feeling that you can't remember whether you have had something done, or if you have, can you find the right documentation.  I searched desperately to find this elusive bit of landlord documentation on my various email addresses, but nothing came up.  At this point I knew the chances of getting my rental advert live were sinking into the soon to be experienced Dubai sand.

EPC register 

Knowing that I wasn't going to be able to sort my EPC remotely, and fearing that at best the hard copy was residing with a letting agent that I had fallen out with, I decided to requisition an EPC assessor to come and meet me at the rental property on my return to duly issue me with another useless bit of paper.

Mark turned up promptly on Blue Monday appropriately with his little Mini Cooper and his set of retractable ladders, all raring to go.  He'd already told me it was going to take no longer than 30 mins.  Whistling and chirping away to himself he busied himself ticking his boxes whilst I disappeared off to inspect a let garage (that's another story).

On my return, Mark now finishing up,  mentioned that he was going to upload it to the EPC Register.  Well, this is a new one on me.  It turns out that this EPC register allows anybody to do a search by property to find whether there is a valid EPC associated with the property. 

Now, had I known or possibly remembered then I could have accessed my rental property details and established that I had already got an EPC.  What was more annoying was it was there ready to download as a PDF. 

The upshot being obviously I could have downloaded the entire 4 page Energy Performance Certificate informing me that my rental property currently scores a modest 58 and has a D classification.  Not good but not bad!  It also tells me that for a megre investment of £17, 000 on a £75,000 property my tenants could save about £350 a year on their energy bill.  Not compelling.

So landlords who need access to their EPC should remember that they can download their EPC from the good old government EPC register for FREE.  Enjoy!

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Anonymous said...

Only problem with your situation is you need "Enter the Report Reference Number; this is the 24-digit number that appears on the front page of the Energy Performance Certificate e.g. 1234-1234-1234-1234-1234." in order to retrieve your documents.

Anonymous said...

No you don't you can search for an EPC by address if you have the postcode (which I presume you would know!)