Dear Chris, I am buying a new house, and the vendors have been told they need an energy certificate to sell it to me.
When I take possession of the property I am going to be renting it out – will the energy certificate be transferred to me, or will I have to get a new one?
Fred McNulty, via email, Monday 6 July, 2009
Thanks for your query about Energy Performance Certificates. The certificates are now compulsory, so whenever a building is built, sold or rented out, it must have a certificate showing its energy efficiency grade.
An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) gives homeowners, tenants, landlords and potential buyers a certificate on the energy efficiency of their property. The EPC gives a building a standard energy and carbon emission efficiency grade from A to G, with A being the most efficient and G the least. Currently, the average rating for homes in the UK is D.
For more details on the certificates, please read our guide Do I need an Energy Performance Certificate? Below is some more information on renting out a house with an EPC…
Once issued, the Energy Performance Certificate for a building is valid for 10 years. It can be used time and time again during this period. You do not have to apply for a new certificate even if you have work carried out to the property, though if you’re making energy efficient improvements, such as having double glazing fitted or cavity wall insulation installed, it is always worth applying for a new EPC, so you can see how much the rating of your home has improved, and how much you’ll be saving on your energy bills.
It’s important to note however, if you do obtain a new EPC you can only use the latest version; not an earlier one. So if your home’s energy efficiency rating goes down you will have to present the latest certificate when you come to sell or rent out the property.
If you are planning to rent out your property and you already have an EPC, maybe because you have just bought the house and the certificate was part of the Home Information Pack, this EPC can be used for subsequent rentals. Similarly, the EPC provided when a newly constructed property is purchased can also be used when renting the property out.
The information included on an Energy Performance Certificate can be very useful, not just for landlords and people buying a property, but also if you want to find out how you can improve the energy rating of your home, and save money on bills.
If you are renting out a property and are managing the gas and electricity bills, so they are included in your tenants’ weekly or monthly rent, it’s important that you compare energy prices and tariffs online, to make sure you get the cheapest deal.
The cheapest energy tariffs are currently ones that you sign up to online, such as British Gas’ WebSaver 4 or npower’s Web 15. With these tariffs you’ll manage your own energy bills by submitting meter readings online, and pay by monthly direct debit. Bills are paperless e-bills, meaning you will not receive a bill in the post.
Hope this information is helpful Fred, and that you’re successful with renting out your new energy-efficient property.
If you have an energy query please email firstname.lastname@example.org