Frequently asked questions
Posted by Mike Gordon on 22 July 2015 01:20 PM
Q. When did the obligations to provide EPCs for rented dwellings come
A. 1 October 2008.
Q. When did the obligations to provide EPCs for the sale of dwellings come
A. For the marketed sale of dwellings this requirement started on 1 August 2007.
For other types of sale, such as non-marketed sales, this requirement started
on 1 October 2008.
Q. When did the obligations for newly constructed dwellings come into
A. 6 April 2008.
Q. How long is an EPC valid for?
A. 10 years.
Q. Where does the 10 year validity period come from?
A. The requirement for an EPC is driven by the European Union legislation,
which includes a provision that the validity period of EPCs should not exceed
Q. Where can I find an energy assessor?
A. Details of accredited energy assessors can be found on www.epcregister.com.
Q. Can a landlord charge a tenant for the provision of an EPC?
A. No. It is not permitted for the landlord to charge for the provision of the original
EPC. However it is permissible for a tenant who has already received the EPC
to be charged for the provision of a copy document.
Q. How do I decide whether to keep the work in-house or use an external
A. This is a decision for individuals. A key factor to consider when choosing
between in-house and external DEAs will be the number of dwellings that
require EPCs and the expected frequency of turnover.
Q. Is it possible to amend and update an EPC without the need to
commission a new assessment? A new EPC may be wanted for example
if a replacement boiler is fitted.
A. An EPC cannot be amended or updated. If you want to capture the benefits of
any energy efficiency measure that you have installed, you will need to
commission a new EPC, for which a new survey will be required.
However, if the work has been funded through the Green Deal, a new
assessment is not required, provided that suitable evidence that the work has
been done is available.
Q. Is it always the building owner who is responsible for producing the
EPC? What if the building owner has no direct relationship with the
A. Where a tenant sub-lets a dwelling, the responsibility to make an EPC
available lies with the sub-leaseholder.
Q. Who has access to the EPCs on the domestic register?
A. Data held on the domestic register is publicly available. It is possible to search
for an EPC on the register by entering either the certificate’s unique reference
number (RRN), or the property’s postcode. Anyone with an EPC can opt out
of having their data made publicly available.
Q. Are asset management databases available that can hold property
specific reduced data standard assessment procedure (RdSAP) input
data and the central register reference number in addition to the other
A. These are being developed by the market in response to a recognised need.
Q. Is it possible to advertise a property before the EPC has been produced?
A. There is nothing to prevent a dwelling being advertised for sale or rent before
the EPC is available. However, the landlord/seller will be expected to have
made contact with a domestic energy assessor and commissioned the EPC
with a view to receiving it within one week of the date it was commissioned.
Q. If an EPC is being produced when the dwelling is empty, what impact
will occupying tenants or owners have on the accuracy of the energy
and environmental ratings when they move in?
A. The occupier will have no impact on the EPC ratings, as these are produced
using standardised occupancy data (i.e. number of occupants and hours of
heating per day).
Q. What if the tenant wants to buy the dwelling they already occupy? Can I
use the same EPC as I used when they took the tenancy?
A. If the tenant wants to purchase the dwelling they rent, the same EPC can be
Q. Is an EPC needed if tenants are moving via a mutual exchange?
A. Whether advertised for exchange via a choice based lettings system or not an
EPC will be required.
Q. Is an EPC needed for shared ownership dwellings?
A. The first equity purchase of the dwelling creates a trigger for an EPC to be
produced. The purchase of subsequent equity does not create a need for a
Q. What happens in the case of stock transfer? Can we have one EPC for a
whole block in that case?
A. For a stock transfer an EPC is required for each dwelling. However, it may be
possible to employ techniques which will reduce the number of dwellings that
need to be assessed. Separate guidance is available on these.
Q. What happens if I need to get an EPC to advertise the property, but I am
going to improve before the new tenant moves in/ the sale is completed?
A. Either explain to the tenant or buyer that improvement works were carried out
since commissioning the EPC and so the dwelling’s energy efficiency rating
may now have changed. It may be beneficial to commission another EPC
after completion of the improvements.
Q. Will I have to issue an EPC if I have a lodger in my house?
A. A letting of a room within your house does not constitute a rental of a building
or part of a building - so a separate EPC for that room is not required.
Q. Will I need to show an EPC to prospective residents of, for example, a
care home or a boarding school?
A. These examples do not constitute a rental of a building or a part of a building.
Therefore, an EPC is not required.
Q. Is an EPC required under a long term regulated tenancy where a tenant
dies and a partner, member of their family or other individual is able to
succeed to the tenancy under the Rent Act 1977?
A. Under such circumstances an EPC is not required.
Q. Will an EPC be needed for holiday accommodation?
A. An EPC will be required for a property rented out as a holiday let where the
building is occupied as a result of a short term letting arrangement and is
rented out for a combined total of four months or more in any 12 month period.
An EPC will not be required where the property is let under a licence to
occupy, regardless of the length of time it is rented out for.
Q. Do static caravans or houseboats require an EPC?
A. No – static caravans and houseboats do not require an EPC because they are