Any commercial building with a floor space greater than 500 square metres needs to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC).
Introduced in England and Wales on August 1st 2007, an EPC features information about the energy usage and typical energy costs for a property.
The EPC will give a property a rating of how energy-efficient the site is, from A (most efficient) to G (less efficient). The EPC, which is valid for ten years, also features recommendations on how to reduce energy use on the premises. Other details include the property address, property type, total floor area, date of inspection, and certificate serial number.
The main aim of an EPC is to show prospective buyers and tenants how much their energy usage might be in the future, whilst they can also be used by local authorities to determine which properties need to focus on energy-efficiency improvements.
When do I need an EPC?
An EPC is needed whenever a property is built, sold or rented. If the building has floor space of over 500 square metres, is regularly visited by the public, and an EPC has already been produced for the site, the EPC must be displayed in the commercial building.
Who is responsible for the EPC?
If you are the landlord, property owner, or the one selling the property, you are responsible for getting an EPC and showing it to the buyer or renter.
You will need to find a commercial energy assessor, registered with an approved accreditation body, who will inspect the property. They will look at key items such as loft insulation, boilers, radiators, windows for double glazing, and then produce your certificate.
Which buildings do not need an EPC?
These will include:
Any building with a floor space of less than 500 square metres
Temporary sites that are used for less than two years
Industrial sites and non-residential agricultural buildings that don’t use a lot of energy
Buildings due to be demolished
Places of worship
How much will it cost me?
The EPC cost depends on fluctuations in the property market and the size, type and location of the property.
To give you an indicator, the current cost of an EPC for an average home is between £70 and £100.
But be prescient, as you can be fined anywhere between £500 and £5,000, depending on the building value, if you don't show an EPC to a prospective buyer or tenant.