The EU Directive on the Energy Performance of Buildings came into effect progressively from 2007 and is an important part of government strategies for tackling climate change. The principle underlying the Directive is to make energy use in buildings transparent by the issuing of a certificate showing the energy rating of a property, accompanied by recommendations on how to improve efficiency. This energy performance certificate (EPC) must be provided whenever a property is constructed, rented out or sold. The EPC shows the energy efficiency rating (relating to running costs) of a dwelling. The rating is shown on an A–G rating scale similar to those used for refrigerators and other electrical appliances.
When the construction of a new building is completed, the builder or person responsible for the construction is responsible for obtaining the certificate and providing it to the owner. This is a duty under Building Regulations. This will also apply if a building is converted into fewer or more units and there are changes to the heating, hot water provision or air conditioning/ ventilation services.
Domestic properties require an EPC on construction and some commercial buildings will require an EPC on construction or conversion. Guidance information on Energy Performance Certificates for homes and commercial buildings is available below and on the gov.uk website.
Communities and Local Government (DCLG) is leading the introduction of a number of energy and cost savings measures to make all buildings more efficient. The measures are being applied across all European Union countries and are in line with the European Directive for the Energy Performance of Buildings (EPBD) (recast).