energy performance certificates and EPC’s

URGENT – The Domestic Renewable Heat Initiative is Ending 31 March 2022

The Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (Domestic RHI) is a government financial incentive to promote the use of renewable heat. People who join the scheme and stick to its rules receive quarterly payments for seven years for the amount of clean, green renewable heat it’s estimated their system produces.

However, the Domestic RHI scheme closes at midnight on 31 March 2022. You need to apply by this date if you want to get Domestic RHI payments.

Types of heating you can claim for?

  • Biomass boilers
  • Solar water heating
  • Heat pumps

The Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (DRHI) is a government financial incentive to promote the use of renewable heat, which can help reduce carbon emissions and meet the UK’s renewable energy targets.

The DRHI is open to all households, on and off the gas grid, who have installed a renewable heating system and meet the eligibility criteria. People who join and follow the scheme rules receive quarterly payments over seven years for clean, green, renewable heat their systems are estimated to produce.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), is responsible for developing the underpinning RHI policy including setting tariffs, establishing the legislative framework, and introducing amendments to the scheme. Under the regulations, we are the administrator of the RHI. Any queries about aspects of policy should be addressed directly to BEIS. Under the regulations, Ofgem was appointed as the administrator of the DRHI scheme.

BEIS periodically reviews DRHI scheme policy which means the rules can change for both new and existing participants. To achieve successful accreditations and to keep receiving payments, it is important to keep up to date with the scheme rules.

Ofgem will publish information on how they administer policy changes. Please note that the content and timing of any changes they outline will be subject to parliamentary process. Their updates are based on information provided by BEIS.

There is still time, How to Apply, click on the link below…

https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/environmental-and-social-schemes/domestic-renewable-heat-incentive-domestic-rhi/applicants/apply-domestic-rhi

 

Need help with EPC’s or advice on how to improve your energy performance rating? For further advice on The Domestic Renewable Heat Initiative, contact us on https://summitenvironmental.co.uk/contact/

URGENT – The Domestic Renewable Heat Initiative is Ending 31 March 2022

EPC Certificate

Do landlords need an EPC for a commercial or residential lease renewal?

An EPC is valid for ten years and in that time the assessment, results and recommendations can change. It is now well known that a valid

EPC

EPC Rating band D

EPC is needed for the letting of a property.

However, with any legislation there is always uncertainty and further explanation is needed. One of the questions that has cropped up regularly from both landlords and tenants is “do I need to renew an EPC during a tenancy?”

What is an energy performance certificate?

An EPC assesses the energy performance of a property, from “A” representing the most energy efficient property to “G” representing the least energy efficient property.

The Energy Performance Certificate has been with us since 2007 and is gathering power as time moves on towards the targets that the Government has set, which is to be carbon neutral by 2050.

Do I need to renew an EPC during a tenancy?

EPC Regulations

Owners will only need to obtain a new energy performance certificate for their rental property every ten years. However, it is likely that over this decade new innovations in efficiency and the expected wear and deterioration of the rental could mean that a property that reached the MEES on its last inspection, could fall short of the mark ten years on.

With this being said, providing that the rental property achieved an EPC rating of an E or above, the certification is valid over the usual period, regardless of if this is during a tenancy. However, do landlords need to renew their EPC if it expired during a tenancy. Simply put no, the limitations are placed on advertising the property to new tenants, therefore landlords can obtain a new certificate once their existing fixed term has come to an end.

EPC Regulations 2007

The 2007 Regulations require an EPC on the grant of a lease. The guidance further states that the purpose of providing an EPC is for a prospective tenant to consider the energy performance of the property.

It is therefore reasonable to conclude that a “prospective tenant” does not include a person who is already a tenant. This makes sense in the context of the EPC regime, as the renewing tenant should already know about the building’s energy performance of the property. An EPC would serve no real purpose in those circumstances and having to provide one would be a waste of time and money.

However, the MEES Regulations provide information only when there is a valid EPC currently in place as a result of the EPC regulations applying.

MEES Regulations on non-domestic dwellings

The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015 established a minimum level of energy efficiency (MEES Regulations) for privately rented property in England and Wales. The Mees Regulations came into force on 1 April 2018.

It states that the landlord will only be required to obtain a new EPC if they intend to re-let the property (to the current tenant, or to a new tenant) once the current lease expires, or if they (or their tenant) modify the property in a manner which would require a new EPC. So for non-domestic properties the guidance is clear and an EPC is required on the renewal of a lease, if there was a valid EPC previously. However, oddly the MEES Regulations for domestic dwellings differ.

MEES Regulations on domestic dwellings (March 2019 version)

The regulations state that; the landlord will only be required to obtain a new EPC (which will trigger a need to comply with the minimum energy efficiency provisions) if they intend to remarket the property for let once the current tenancy expires, or if they (or their tenant) modify the property in a manner which would require a new EPC to be obtained. It is not exactly clear on how we are to interpret this, although it seems likely that a landlord would not remarket the property for let if a new lease were being granted to the current tenant.

Therefore you need to distinguish between domestic and non-domestic property on the question of whether an EPC is needed on a lease renewal.

Is It illegal to let a property without an EPC?

Any property that has been rented to tenants since 2008 has been required to produce an Energy Performance Certificate. As mentioned briefly mentioned above, a landlord is unable to advertise their rental property to tenants unless their property has an EPC rating of “E” or above, preventing them from begging a new tenancy unless their rental meets Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards, but more on that later.

If a landlord is found to be renting out their buy to let property whilst it has an invalid EPC or the property didn’t satisfy the minimum

Is It illegal to let a property without an EPC?

Is It illegal to let a property without an EPC?

criteria of the efficiency assessment, the local authority can take action. If notified by a tenant, or if found through internal investigations, officers from trading standards can demand that a landlord produce a valid EPC for the rental. If the property owner is unable to provide the requested documentation within 7 days, they are liable to pay a penalty charge.

Additionally, landlords are legally required to issue each new tenant with a range of new documentation before they move into the rental property, with one of these being an EPC. If upon signing a new tenancy agreement and commencing a tenancy period the tenants have not been issued with a valid EPC for the appropriate property, a fixed penalty of 12.5% of the building’s rateable value will be charged, with a fee of £750 being issued to the landlord if this cannot be applied. Whilst the penalties that can be issued to landlords for breaching these regulations is capped at £5,000, if the landlord continually fails to provide an EPC to a enforcement officer from the local authority, another fine of £200 will be issued.

EPC low Band

Problems with lending with a low EPC banding?

Problems with lending with a low EPC banding?

Many of us are aware that the EPC is needed for the sale or the rental of a property, although there are occasions when one party can overlook having a valid certificate and an EPC is needed in a hurry.

A valid EPC is also needed when further borrowing is being considered by a property owner, which is a situation that I have seen crop up on numerous occasions. What I have not encountered is the effect upon the additional advance, has it been declined or maybe at a less favourable APR?

If you are considering a buy to let option, consider this also, your mortgage broker may not advance you the loan that you are seeking if the EPC of the property is a low grade. You may also find that if you are granted the loan that you need for your buy to let, your offer may be at a less favourable rate for a property that is less energy efficient.

In our experience?

There may be some tenants who are not too concerned about the property that they are renting and could be seen as easy targets by some unscrupulous landlords who may provide a poorly performing property where heat emission, heat retention and cost of providing energy efficiency in the height of winter becomes critically expensive and the property can become unbearably hot during the summer months.

Good insulation is good for you, your property and your wallet throughout the year and all seasons.

One of the goals of the EPC is to reduce, hopefully eliminate fuel poverty, we know that there are countless families in the country who are struggling with their fuel bills, time and time again we hear the phrase “do I eat, or do I heat”.  This surely cannot be right?

Recommendations

If you are going into a tenancy, your landlord needs to provide you with a valid Energy Performance Certificate, if you are not sure about some of the content, you can contact Summit Environmental, we will explain the EPC in as much detail as possible.

With any legislation there are always grey areas which can create uncertainty and need further exploration. One of the questions that has cropped up several times and both from landlords and tenants is this, “I am renewing the tenancy, the same occupants, do I need to have an EPC completed?”

We can see some very good reasons for doing so and therefore the answer must be yes, if a tenant is extending their lease there should be an EPC in place which is current.

The current proposal is that in 2025 all new tenancies must have a certification no lower than band C and from 2028 all existing rental property must also reach that band C target, which may become a huge headache for landlords and potentially a very expensive one.

In addition to this information existing EPC’ s ratings and recommendations, as stated previously begin to become less valid. For example, fibre insulation compresses over time and becomes less efficient. For example, fibre loft insulation which was to a depth of 150mm. Ten years ago may now measure 125mm due to compression. In the same way double glazing ages, on many assessments the rating for pre 2002 double glazing the assessment is seen as average, due to materials used, glazing gap and them still being sealed units.

The benefits of a good EPC?

The benefit to the landlord is this, that if you are offering an energy efficient property, you are seen not only in a good light and one who looks after his residents but also one who can attract a good price for his property, which would also be a more desirable property for rental.

The benefit to the tenant or resident, may be that this property may be slightly more expensive initially but over the course of time that you are likely to be there, the home will be warmer and more comfortable for you and your family, avoiding damp through condensation, avoiding potential health issues and obviously fuel bills should be lower.

Need assistance with EPC’s in Sussex, Kent or Surrey, advice on the EPC Regulations, how to improve your EPC rating contact us on [email protected]

Energy Price Cap and Cost Increases for Energy.

Need help with Increasing energy bills? How to offset the energy price increase.

Wholesale gas prices have soared throughout 2021 leading to more than 20 domestic suppliers biting the dust. Increased costs have filtered through to consumers with a significant rise to the energy price cap in October 2021.

Why are energy bills going up?Increasing cost of energy

A dramatic increase in the cost of wholesale gas has put pressure on the energy industry and exposed the cracks. Factors for the prices going up include supply and demand following a particularly cold winter across Europe in 2020. Unseasonably warm weather in Asia saw more households use gas for air conditioning units, while there has been reduced supply from Russia amid reported political moves.

The UK store less gas than any other country in Europe. Regarding the insulating of our homes, you may say, if the environment is that much warmer, what is the need to insulate in a country like the United Kingdom where severe weather is less common and the likelihood of snow during the winter less likely and frosty mornings something that may become memories from our past?

How to offset the energy price increase?

Insulating your home doesn’t just make it more energy efficient, it is also one of the best things you can do to reduce your energy bills remember to look for cheaper energy deals that may be available and that you may be able to switch to. Insulating your home will make your house warmer and more comfortable, while also reducing its impact on the environment in the process.

Insulation – and draught proofing – protects your home against cold in winter and excess heat in the summer and can even reduce noise pollution (like the sound from a road or passing aircraft). What’s more, some key insulation measures are ‘low cost’, in that they pay for themselves in less than five years.

Low energy lighting – these measures have the best returns of all energy efficiency investments. Furthermore, if you decide to sell or rent your home, the rating that your home receives on an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) will be improved.

How does the heat escape from my house and the cold get in?

There are five ways that heat can escape:

  1. Conduction

    That’s heat moving through solids like metal or brick.

  2. Radiation

    This is the heat you directly feel when you stand near a heat source. It is in fact infra-red radiation, and just another form of ‘electromagnetic radiation’ like radio waves, visible light, ultra-violet and x-rays – which all travel at the speed of light. If you take infra-red photos of your house on a cold, still night you can help see where heat is being lost.

  3. Convection

    This is the natural tendency of warm air or water or other gases and liquids to rise, while cold air and water falls downwards. This often results in circulation of air and is the main principle behind central heating radiators.

  4. Air movement

    Draughts are a common form of heat loss, taking warm air from within the home and letting it out into the outside (and typically replacing it with cold air coming in). Another example is a wind blowing past a house, which will generally have a cooling effect on it. Water movement has the same effect upon your property.

  5. Evaporation

    Not a process that we naturally associate with heat loss, but if it rains on a hot summer day, after the rain stops, some of it may evaporate from the roof and walls, and this will cool the home considerably.

Where do I need to insulate in my home to protect from heat loss?EPC CERT

On a cold day, heat can escape from your home in all directions, – up, down and sideways. So, you should think about insulating the whole property and not just concentrating on one element.

  • The roof

  • The walls

  • The floor

  • The windows and doors

Many people make the mistake of assuming that heat only goes up – but only one form of heat transfer (convection) primarily moves up. Heat will travel in all directions. It is also known that heat will always travel towards cold.

If you adjoin another home, either through shared walls or through a floor that is in effect another household’s ceiling, or vice versa, you are fortunate as you will not suffer from heat loss, assuming the other side is heated as well. However, you will still need to heat your home, as you will not have heat gain either. The general rule is that the bigger the temperature difference, the greater the flow of heat. So, the colder it is outside, the greater the heat loss from your home.

How much heat is being lost from different parts of my home?Need a survey including asbestos, fire, legionella and EPC

This depends on the type of house that you live in, whether it’s detached or semi-detached, or if it’s a terrace property, and if so, if it is mid or end terrace. When an EPC is being completed on a property, the heat loss perimeter is a significant calculation and will hugely affect the outcome. The larger, or longer the heat loss perimeter is, the more heat you will lose from it. If you live in a flat, the losses will be different again, and will depend on whether your flat is in the middle, at the top or at ground floor level.

For a typical house the walls will lose most heat, around 30% and up to 40%. The roof will be next at around 25%, probably followed by windows and doors at around 20%, and the floor (of your lowest storey) at around 10%. Quite a large loss will occur because of draughts and a lack of airtightness. Of course, draughts can also be attributed to floors, doors and windows, the walls or roof. It should also be known that some controlled ventilation is essential for reducing the risk of stale or damp air.

Do I need planning permission for insulation work?

In most cases, insulation work does not require planning permission from your local council. The exceptions may include external wall insulation and, in areas where there are conservation schemes, glazing.

Even if you don’t need planning permission, building regulations could apply, so check with your local council’s building control department.

What types of insulation are there?

Good insulation typesImprove your EPC value

Good insulators include many products that typically have a structure similar to wool. In effect a good insulator will trap tiny pockets of air within a material which itself is also a good insulator. These include the very common mineral and glass wools, which come on rolls in blanket form, or in a somewhat denser form as batts or slabs.

Sheep’s wool is of course a great insulator, as are other natural fabrics like hemp and cotton – so curtains are good insulation products. Some mineral and glass wool style products are ‘higher density’ and therefore have greater insulation effect, typically about 25% greater.

Most wood and wood- based products, for example, MDF, plywood, and hardboard, are also generally quite good insulators – so wooden doors and wooden loft boards help keep warmth in the home.

Not surprisingly, paper is another a good insulator, including recycled paper, and cellulose from other sources such as crop wastes. Although flammable in its untreated form, it is treated to make it fire resistant for use as insulation. This is supplied in sealed sacks, but once opened is in loose form, which makes it suitable for installing in circumstances where blankets or batts won’t fit.

Polystyrene and similar products are generally good insulators. Polystyrene is sometimes referred to as EPS (expanded or extruded polystyrene slab) form. These products are also usually fire resistant, and much denser and heavier than the sort of polystyrene that is used for packaging. EPS is typically 50% more effective, for the same depth, as a standard mineral or glass wool product.

Closely related are spray foam solutions, which are typically polyurethane based. The foam forms on the mixing of two chemicals and it hardens, trapping tiny pockets of air. Because the foam fills crevices and gaps, it can also eliminate draughts and provide strengthening to existing building structures, for example roof tiles. Other foam solutions include adhesive strips for insulating around windows, doors, or loft hatches.

Some ‘insulators’ work by stopping the flow of air (draughts) through cracks and gaps, such as sealants (mastics). One of the cheapest sealants is papier-Mache, which you can make yourself from torn-up paper and wallpaper glue.

Another method of insulation is reflection. There are now multi-foil products, which are generally a sandwich of metal foils and plastic style insulators. These can be used to reflect radiated heat and are designed to insulate where there is not the space for wool, batt and EPS type products. Some polystyrene and other products are also coated with foils.

Good insulation material doesn’t just slow the process of heat loss, depending on its specific use, there are other properties that are important too, such as physical strength, fire resistance, resistance to mould, and non-toxicity; cost is another important consideration too.

Poor insulation types

Unfortunately, many materials with physical strength and which are therefore used in building construction, including metals (such as copper, steel, and aluminium), stone, brick, tiles, and concrete, are good conductors and have limited ability to insulate. However, some more modern versions of these materials have been designed to have construction strength but lower heat transmission than in the past, for example, modern breeze blocks.

Water is also a bad insulator, which means that anything that soaks up moisture will usually conduct heat away quite quickly. Moving air also takes heat away quickly even though air that is prevented from moving, generally when trapped in tiny pockets, makes a good insulator.

Most effective ways to reduce energy bills?

1. A digital thermometer

Digital thermometers that record the maximum and minimum temperature since last being reset can show you just how warm or cold different parts of your home are. This is basic tool that will help you to identify specific rooms in your home that need attention. Working on the basis ‘if you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it’, thermometers are a good investment.

2. A plug-in thermostat

If you use an electric heater without thermostatic controls, your heater will continue to generate heat and use electricity even after a room is warm enough, which is a waste of energy and money. A plug-in thermostat can solve this. You plug the heater into the plug-in thermostat, which is in turn plugged into a power socket, rather like plugging an electrical device into a time switch. You can then set the temperature you want on the plug-in thermostat and once it hits that temperature, it cuts off power to the heater.

3. An electric blanket

Electric blankets can be a way of compensating for a chilly bedroom. Most electric blankets are designed to fit below the bottom sheet, they are typically used to pre-warm a bed. During this pre-warming phase they have a relatively high -power consumption, around 100 watts for a double sized bed. Once you are in bed, an electric blanket must be turned down to the sleep setting. This setting uses about a quarter of the electricity, typically around 25 watts, which is equivalent to a couple of mid-power low energy light bulbs. However, many people turn the blanket off altogether once they get into bed.

One alternative to an electric blanket is a hot water bottle, although this is not necessarily more energy efficient, especially if you do turn the blanket off once you get into bed – which is a good habit to get into. Neither option should be a substitute for sufficient bedding, or an appropriately warmed bedroom. It’s important to ensure that any bedroom is not too cold, especially if the sleeper is elderly, unwell or a young child.

4. A brass radiator key

A brass radiator key is a useful investment for bleeding your radiators, which releases the gases caught in a radiator causing it to be cold towards the top and reducing its efficiency. It is worth paying extra to invest in a brass key, rather than buying a pressed steel one, as the latter tend to be easily broken. Many modern radiators don’t have the standard square valve head — if that’s the case you’ll need a screwdriver as well.

5. A radiator shelf

A radiator shelf just above a radiator helps to throw heat forward from the radiator into the room, rather than letting it raise up to the ceiling. You can buy purpose-made radiator shelves, which clip easily onto most radiators.

6. Radiator reflector panels

Radiator reflector panels can stop heat being wasted from the back of a radiator into an external wall. They are especially useful in older homes where the walls are solid, which rules out the option of cavity wall insulation. You can buy radiator reflector panels or radiator foil, or you can make your own by cutting a piece of cardboard to size and covering it in the type of kitchen tin foil you use for cooking. You’ll need a long stick and double-sided tape to attach them to the wall behind the radiator.

8. A carbon monoxide alarm

Getting rid of draughts and unnecessary ventilation is a major way of reducing wasted heat, saving money on your energy bills in the process.

A carbon monoxide alarm is not energy-saving but you need to invest in one before you make any changes to reduce draughts or alter the ventilation in your home. This is in case you block a source of essential ventilation by mistake, such as for a fuel burning device that doesn’t have a balanced flue, for example, an old boiler. It’s a good idea to have an alarm anyway; carbon monoxide (CO) is highly toxic, but impossible to detect without an alarm because it is colourless, odourless and tasteless.

9. Expanding foam

There are some simple solutions to draughts. Expanding foam, which comes in an aerosol can, is useful for filling holes in brickwork. If you upgrade your boiler, for example, any new boiler will have a balanced flue, meaning you no longer need an air ventilation in an external wall in the area where the boiler is sited. So, the obsolete airbrick could be filled with expanding foam. One word of caution though: many gas fires still don’t have balanced flues, so don’t assume you can block up a room vent just because you are upgrading a gas fire. It’s also important to keep clear any ventilation in roof spaces or under the level of floorboards.

10. Papier-Mache

Another heat saving measure is to fill medium-sized gaps in floorboards with papier-Mache – this is easy to make, you just mix wet wallpaper paste with torn newspaper – which is easy to press into the gaps. It’s a very effective and inexpensive solution, assuming you’re not intending to expose the floorboards as a feature.

11. Sealant

Smaller gaps that allow draughts can be filled using a tube of sealant. You may need a simple steel caulking gun, or the sealant may be packaged so you can use it without one. It works well to fill gaps around doors and window frames.

12. A letterbox flap

A letterbox flap to keep out draughts at your front door is another inexpensive investment, especially useful if the outer flap doesn’t fit or return to its position very well.

13. Draught seals

Ill-fitting doors and windows can be a source of draughts. There are a variety of draught seals or sealing strips that can be used around doors and windows to reduce draughts and stop the unnecessary loss of warm air.

14. Curtains

Windows and doors will also benefit from heavy or lined curtains, especially if they are only single glazed.

15. A chimney balloon

A chimney balloon blocks the cold air that falls down a chimney, as well as preventing internal warm air from being drawn up the chimney when it is not in use. The balloon can be deflated and taken out of the fireplace as and when you need to use it. If you are looking for a more permanent solution, and don’t have plans to use your fireplace at all, it is best to get a qualified tradesman to cap the chimney at the top and shut it off at the bottom, as this will be more energy-efficient.

You only pay for the electricity and gas that you actually use, so a good way for us to cope with rising prices is to try to use energy efficiently. Remember that properties that are well insulated do get a double bonus of good insulation, the first being warmer in the winter and the second cooler in the summer, which when you consider the cost and effect of air conditioning is a tremendous plus point.

How can Summit Environmental help?

Need an EPC, speak to Summit Environmental

EPC

Need an EPC in Kent from Tunbridge Wells, Maidstone and Rye or an EPC in Sussex from Brighton to Crawley, Haywards Heath and Eastbourne. EPC’s in Surrey from Sutton, Reigate and Caterham.  After the EPC we can help understanding your EPC, guide you with how to make your home more energy efficient or advice on if you are spending money on the right investment Contact us on [email protected] or contact us through the website Contact

Compulsory EPC band “C” by 2025

New EPC Regulations for Landlords in 2025

The government has recently proposed new EPC regulations that will change the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards, it’s planned to take effect in 2025; these changes will impact the domestic rental property in England and Wales.

Currently, the minimum energy efficiency standards (MEES) allowed for rented properties are a minimum of an E rating on their Energy Performance Certificate (EPC).

The new EPC regulations would mean that from 2025, your rented property would need to have a certification rating of C or above.

The changes are to ensure homes are more energy-efficient and to reduce carbon waste, progressing towards the government’s net-zero targets.

Houses in the UK are generally older than in the rest of Europe, and considerable improvements can be made to the energy efficiency in our homes.

These changes will upgrade the private sector homes, which helps to reduce energy bills and increase comfort for tenants as homes will be warmer, whilst focusing on reducing the delivery of the statutory fuel poverty target of EPC, by a deadline of 2030. However, these changes will be phased in, starting with new tenancies from 2025 and then all tenancies from 2028 and apply to all domestic and private rental properties on a lease between 6 months to 99 years.

New EPC Regulations

Given the Government’s public commitment to net zero by 2050 at the recent international COP 26 hosted in Glasgow last year, it is looking as if the new standards will come in or at least something very close to the proposed changes. The new Bill states:

The Secretary of State must amend the Energy Efficiency (Private Rented 15 Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015 (SI 2015/962) to require that, subject to subsection (2)—

(a) all new tenancies must have an energy efficiency performance of at least EPC Band C from 31 December 2025; and

(b) all existing tenancies must be at least EPC Band C from 31 December 20 2028 where practical, cost-effective and affordable as defined under section 1(4).

What is the current EPC Rating?

The EPC rating was first introduced in 2007 in both England and Wales, the Energy Performance Certification rates a property’s energy efficiency on a scale from A to G, A being most efficient and G being least efficient. EPC

It is the responsibility of the Landlord to provide their tenants with an EPC rating. Currently landlords need to get a new EPC every ten years.

Aiming for a high EPC rating can mean lower energy bills and reduce your carbon footprint, this makes your property more attractive to potential buyers or tenants.

How will these new EPC Regulations impact landlords?

Having to jump from a minimum E rating to a C, can potentially cost landlords thousands.

Landlords will be expected to pay for either insulating their properties to retain heat or use other ‘fabric first’ features that can help to improve heating and lighting.

Under the new EPC regulations, if you want to advertise your property for rental from 2025 and onwards, you’ll be required to give lettings agents an updated and compliant EPC for the property they are advertising. You will not be able to advertise your property if it does not have a rating of C or above.

What do Landlords need to do to improve their EPC Rating?

You will need to prepare, especially if your rating is at E to G, understand what options are available to you, what changes to energy efficiency measures are appropriate for your property. Consider the cost element wisely ensuring that you get the best return on your investment, both for value for money and effect upon your EPC. You can start by making sure that you have done the following to improve your EPC rating.

  1. Improve your lighting to LED light bulbs
  2. Insulate the walls and roof
  3. Improve windows with double or triple glazing
  4. Install an energy-efficient boiler
  5. Use a smart meter

Generally investing in renewable energy will help to improve your EPC of your rental property, especially using products such as solar panels and ground-source heat pumps.

Financial Help to Fund the new EPC Regulations?

Improving and upgrading your energy sources can be costly. Some landlord associations and regulatory bodies are calling for financial support to help landlords make these improvements to their rental properties.

The Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) believes that the new rules and requirements may not be realistic or achievable for many landlords to meet the standards required.

Landlords and their letting agents have already been impacted by tax changes, and some are struggling to find support to tenants who have covid-19 related arrears.

The ARLA is concerned about the financial impact on landlords and its meaning there may be fewer rental properties available to tenants who need them.

How can Summit Environmental help?

Who are Summit Environmental? Summit Environmental is a consultancy specialising is assisting the property sector with Asbestos, Fire, Legionella and Energy Performance Certificates. Summit Environmental can offer you a range of EPC’s regardless of your needs, please contact us for advice on

  • Non Domestic – Non-Domestic ‘As Designed’ EPC – Part L2A
  • Non Domestic EPC Non-Domestic ‘As Designed’ EPC – Part L2A
  • Domestic – Domestic ‘As Designed’ EPC – Part L1A
  • Domestic – Domestic ‘As Built’ EPC – Part L1B
  • Green Deals advice and consultancy

Need an EPC In Sussex, we cover East Grinstead, Crawley to Eastbourne and Hastings.  Need an EPC in EPC’s in London we cover Caterham, Epsom, Coulsdon and Biggin Hill. Need an EPC in Kent, we cover Tunbridge Wells, Ashford and Canterbury for EPC’s. Need an EPC in an area not mentioned, contact us on [email protected] 01342 835 140 and 01424 612288

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How can Summit Environmental help you?

Who are Summit Environmental?

Summit Environmental is a Sussex based consultancy, with offices in Sussex and London and specialise in protection of life, buildings, and the environment.

By working with us, we will help you make sense of the regulations, improve the safety performance of your business, and keep you compliant. Our aim is to provide excellent customer service that exceeds your expectations whilst providing cost-effective solutions.

What can Summit Environmental do for you?

Asbestos – surveys, testing and material removal. We undertake asbestos management surveys, asbestos refurbishment surveys, asbestos demolition or asbestos re-inspection surveys in East Sussex, West Sussex, Kent, Surrey and London. With testing of materials likely to contain asbestos. We undertake asbestos remediation and remediation management as and when you need it.

Legionella – Legionella Risk Assessments, temperature checks and schematics. We undertake legionella risk assessments, temperature checks, Legionella Control, Water Hygiene Services in Sussex, Surrey, Kent and London.

Fire – fire risk assessments and fire extinguishers, fire alarm checks and fire door surveys. Need a fire risk assessment in Kent, Surrey, Sussex and London, contact us.

Hazardous material sampling – Lead and anthrax testing with other hazardous materials such as PCBs or CFCs in blown foams up to contaminated land services in Sussex, Surrey, Kent, London

EPC’s – Domestic EPC’s in East and West Sussex, non-domestic EPC’s for commercial premises across Sussex, London and Kent, or need a retrofit assessments or green deal contact us.

Floor Plans – For sale or lease of properties to super prime properties to a one bed flat we can cover them all.

EWS1 and Combustibility – Testing and advice on cladding materials. Cladding materials can be Aluminium Composite Cladding, Expanded Polystyrene, GRP, Timber. We can test and provide remediation of hazardous cladding.

Training – Awareness training, online training, day tuition for all of the above.

 

Contact us on 0203 874 9530 or 01342 835 140
E. info@summitenvironmental.co.uk

Need an EPC, speak to Summit Environmental

Got a question regarding an EPC? Here are our questions we get asked the most

Q1. Are EPC’S a legal requirement?

Energy Performance Certificates are a legal requirement within the property building, letting and sales market. If you are building a property the EPC’s will be produced from the plans for the construction, if you are in the process of letting or selling an existing property you must have one to support the transaction, the EPC will be a visual and non-intrusive examination of your property, this is the responsibility of the seller or landlord to arrange. For sales this has been a requirement since 2007, and for the rental sector since 2008. The EPC is valid for ten years, and although you may have one which is out of date, which is not illegal, you are unable to proceed with selling or letting.

Q2. Are EPC’s accurate?

The programme for data calculation is very accurate, for existing property the RDSAP, Reduced Data Standard Assessment Procedure is used, the ‘Reduced’ means visual information collected on site, a non-intrusive inspection. The assessor can only input what he can see, access may not always be good, and if he is advised of works which have been done, the property owner will need documented evidence of that work, to support data entry. The assessor will also benefit from the knowledge of the property owner where certain items may not be obvious, such as where there may have been extensions and clarity of build date may be needed.
Some of the factors that the Energy Assessor is not able to change, are already pre-set in the software programme, and other factors have no effect upon the RDSAP software.
It also worth considering that Government Legislation is often changed, as are the building regulations, in line to meet Government Targets. New building materials, insulation and new technologies are all having effect on the grading of your EPC assessment. There-fore when you had an EPC completed ten years ago, your current EPC may be down-graded to show a lower result.
If you believe that the EPC that has been produced for your property is not correct, you are able to lodge a complaint, in the first instance to the Energy Assessor who completed the EPC. You are also able to make complaint to the Assessor’s Accreditation Agency.
On this point, SAP, Standard Assessment Procedure, full data is collected from plans, that were used for new domestic buildings that have been built since April 2008.

Q3. Are EPC’s still required?

The answer is a most definite yes, EPC’s most certainly needed when a home being sold by owner or being put up for rent. When a new build is under construction there will also be an EPC produced, this one will be based upon he plans of the build. With an ever-changing range of energy efficient products, you can work on the assumption, the newer the build, the more energy efficient it should be. With a target of zero carbon emissions by 2050, I can only imagine that the EPC will become more important. If you look at the Government schemes for improving the energy efficiency of our housing stock, they include an EPC to verify improvements and so the EPC will only become more commonly used.

Q4. Are EPC’s Required for holiday lets?

A holiday let would normally be exempt from needing an EPC, having said so, that is based upon the ruling that it would be used for less than four months of the year. Another thing to bear in mind is that for most holiday lets, the energy used is normally paid by the property owner. The property would also, if used for four months of the year, be using energy consumption of less than 25% of what would be the result of all year use.

Q5. Do Listed Buildings need an EPC?

The first line of action is to check on historicengland.org.uk if the property is a listed building.
Either way get an EPC completed on your property, by an accredited assessor, he should not switch off any recommendations unless given written guidance by the Local Conservation Officer, stating that the specific recommendation would “unacceptably alter the properties character or appearance” The owner should review the recommendations and be encouraged to consider making cost effective improvements that will reduce energy consumption and make the building more comfortable. Should the minimum energy efficiency standard not be achievable, or planning restrictions apply, then it could be used as grounds for an exemption.

Q6. Can EPC’s Fail?

The rating of an EPC is graded between the highest rating of A and the lowest of G. and being the least efficient, and therefore the more costly to run, and potentially the most damaging to the environment. The EPC is not a document to state if the property fails, but only an assessment to state where improvements can be made. The average band for the UK. is band D.
As a property owner the EPC that you have will advise you of the steps that you can take to make your property more efficient, warmer, more comfortable and cost you less to run.

If you are a property owner who intends to let the property for rent, or maybe a part of it, then what you need to be aware of is that the minimum energy standards for privately rented properties is to be no lower than band E.

Q7. Can EPC’S be done remotely?

Remotely is an adverb, from a distance, without physical contact.

I suppose that in one way you could say that an EPC is completed remotely, due to it being a non-intrusive assessment of the energy performance of your property, the energy assessor will enter in the data that he can see to complete the assessment, the property owner may support his findings with history about the property and may support that with receipts or guarantees of work completed.
To add further clarity, the domestic property assessor does need to be on site, as does the owner, or his agent, and willing and able to give access to the home.

Q8. Can an EPC be completed on-line?

The accredited energy assessor will have two ways to complete the EPC, either by a paper document, which he will complete and then support it with floor plan, site notes, property measurements and photographs, alternatively he may enter the details directly through to the accreditation company using an I-pad or mobile phone, also supported with floor plan, site notes, measurements and photographs.
The EPC is unable to be prepared by any other party.

Q9. Who can do an EPC certificate?

The energy assessor who collects the various data and supporting evidence will enter this into the software that will determine and calculate the energy efficiency of the property that he is assessing.
For existing buildings, rather than new, the Reduced Data Standard Assessment Procedure will be used. Data from your property will include items like date of build, heat loss walls, party walls, wall type and insulation, both water and space-heating, glazing and insulation plus doors.
There are some factors that are pre-set in the RDSAP software, such as standard occupancy, standard heating patterns, building regulations values and dates, SAP fuel prices, standard lighting usage, and standard locality and topography.
When these figures are brought together is when the RDSAP software produces the EPC rating, and certificate.

Q10. I can-not find my old EPC certificate.

The new 2020 EPC register will enable you to review your most recent EPC, and to check if it is still valid. The register was launched by the housing minister, Christopher Pincher on 30th September 2020, and holds details for over 27 million properties. You may be able to access a copy of your missing EPC document, but only if one exists.

https://find-energy-certificate.digital.communities.gov.uk/find-a-certificate/search-by-postcode