How do you choose an EPC provider?

The Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) can only be produced by an accredited Domestic Energy Assessor (DEA) or Home Inspector (HI), who is qualified and regulated.

How do you choose an EPC provider?

An estate agent may employ a qualified DEA and if not they may suggest you get your EPC from a company they normally use, usually at your expense. You can accept this, or you can instruct your own provider.

An EPC provided via the agent is generally more expensive than one you commission independently.

The EPC should be available within 28 days of marketing your home for sale. This will shortly be reduced to 7 days; the same applies when you offer a home for rent. Ideally, the EPC should be ready at the start of the marketing efforts. To be sure you comply with the law, you’ll want reassurance that the EPC you pay for will be provided promptly.

When choosing your own provider, you have two options:

  1. Choose a local DEA – You deal directly with them. A local DEA will not expect payment until they carry out the survey. They will be very experienced in assessment of building styles and type locally.
  2. Buy off the Internet – These internet based companies (Panels) take payment, usually in advance. The DEA they instruct may have no experience of local property style and type as they may well travel some distance to carry out the assessment. This can impact on the time they spend at your property obtaining the relevant data and ultimately on the accuracy of the EPC produced. Further, here are some “rogue” panels that take payment from you and then do not provide the EPC. Also, some companies fail to pay the DEA that produced your EPC. If you are unlucky enough to fall victim to such a situation, you will need to pay for another energy survey to provide the EPC.

The Institute of Domestic Energy Assessors maintains a list of members in all areas of the country who can provide your EPC.

You can find a good DEA at: http://findadea.whatstheidea.org.uk/

Buying off the internet. How can you protect yourself?

  1. Check the Company display, on their website, their company name, address and telephone contact numbers – an e-mail address alone is not satisfactory.
  2. Ask for the Name and Accreditation number of the Assessor who will be calling. If they cannot tell you straight away, ask them to call you back when they can. Do not pay until they can tell you this – this is your only opportunity to check the credentials of the assessor.
  3. Check the credentials of the assessor using the Landmark website at https://www.epcregister.com/searchAssessor.html
  4. Only when you are completely satisfied confirm and pay for your assessment.
  5. If paying by credit/debit card use Paypal if possible. Credit Card protection is not available for sums below £100.00. Debit Cards have no protection and you have opened the possibility for further monies to be removed if the site is a scam site.

EPC | Cornish residents warned | Trading Standards

The law and those who are not producing EPC when a property is marketed for rent or sale reported the Falmouth Packet.

Since April 2008, all properties now require an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) before going on the market for rent or sale.

The energy performance certificate gives potential buyers or tenants the opportunity to calculate their energy and environmental costs prior to signing a contract so they can consider energy efficiency as part of their decision to buy or occupy that building.

The legislation applies to both residential and commercial landlords. However Cornwall Trading Standards officers have suspected some landlords have been flouting the law by letting or selling buildings without the required energy performance certificate.

Following a ‘desktop survey’, officers from the local authority have compiled a list of 120 commercial properties without a commercial EPC, that are being marketed through the local press in the county.

Landlords who do not comply with the rules face a fine of up to £5,000 based on the rateable value of the building, however Trading Standards officers intend to contact landlords and sellers who are marketing without an EPC with a 28-day warning first.

Cornwall Trading Standards officer, John Tutchier, said: “There appears to be a trend for delaying the provision of an EPC until the last possible opportunity or, in some cases, for not providing one at all. Not having an EPC and marketing a property for sale or rent is against regulations and landlords who do so may be served with a penalty charge notice.”

“Commercial landlords should already be aware of the requirement for a commercial EPC. There has been extensive publicity and a wealth of resources exists to advise and inform as to the requirements. Trading Standards will answer any query relating to enforcement and compliance that people wish to raise.”

“Landlords of residential properties range from individuals with single homes to large operators with multiple homes for rent. For residential properties, the legal obligations are the same whether you own one or many properties. They simply have to obtain a domestic EPC at the earliest opportunity for any property they are going to offer for rent.”

“From an enforcement perspective, the situation is clear: If a property is marketed, then an EPC must be provided at the earliest opportunity.”

Source: Falmouth Packet

In Scotland the legislation came into force in January 2009.