From today, 9 January 2013, all sales or letting advertisements in the commercial media will now be required to show the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of the property being advertised.
The full A-G energy performance graph is not necessary unless there is available space in the advertisement to accommodate it. There is also no longer a requirement to attach the front page of the certificate to any related written material.
Another change introduced in the amended regulations is the exemption of listed buildings from the requirement to possess an EPC. Certificates will no longer be required for “buildings and monuments officially protected as part of a designated environment or because of special architectural or historic merit in so far as compliance with certain energy efficiency requirements would unacceptably alter character or appearance”.
There are also changes to be made regarding the display of EPCs in commercial buildings. These changes can be summarised as follows:
- The current requirement for an EPC to be displayed in large public buildings is extended to include public buildings over 500m².
- A new requirement for an EPC to be displayed in commercial properties larger than 500m² that are frequently visited by the public and where an EPC has previously been issued.
An EPC is to be made available to prospective buyers or tenants of a property who have registered an interest in the property (either by arranging a viewing or requesting further details). The provision of the EPC is the responsibility of the seller or landlord and should be produced in whichever format the buyer or tenant has requested (e.g. hardcopy or via e-mail).
If the landlord or seller of the property has employed an agent to manage the sales/letting process, it will be the agent who supplies the prospective buyer/ tenant with the EPC. However, the responsibility to ensure that this is done still ultimately lies with the landlord/ seller.
In every case, the landlord or seller is obliged to give prospective buyers/ tenants a copy of the properties EPC before any contractual agreement has been entered into. The EPC must always be available to the prospective buyers/tenants free of charge.
Failure to make a required EPC available means that the relevant person (i.e. the landlord) may be liable to a civil penalty charge notice.
There remains an obligation on the person acting on behalf of the seller (the agent) to ensure an EPC has been commissioned prior to marketing.
PSG’s sister company PSG Energy supplies the complete range of EPC’s and related surveys to property agents, developers, utility companies and individuals.