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Shedding light on the new EPC regulations

22/05/2023

Insights

As we all try to do more for the planet, the government is demanding you put your money where your MEES is to bump up your EPC ratings. And you’ll have to hurry, you haven’t got long. 

What are the new EPC regulations? 

On 1 April 2023 new energy performance regulations came into force that stated that all commercial properties must have an EPC rating of E or above. That rating will be valid for ten years from issue. Even if you have a valid EPC certificate, it will be seen as invalid if it doesn’t reach an E rating. 

Are there any EPC exemptions?

There are obviously exceptions, but they are few and far between. It’s better to cover yourself now or face the consequences – sooner rather than later! 

Exemptions for needing an EPC 

As listed by the Government website you will not need an EPC if you can prove the building is any of these: 

  • listed or officially protected and the minimum energy performance requirements would unacceptably alter it 
  • a temporary building only going to be used for 2 years or less 
  • used as a place of worship or for other religious activities 
  • an industrial site, workshop or non-residential agricultural building that doesn’t use much energy 
  • a detached building with a total floor space under 50 square metres 
  • due to be demolished by the seller or landlord 

Why does it matter?

Repeat penalty notices will be issued if property owners fail to reach the minimum rating, with these breaches published on a public register. 

For owners and landlords, this could mean one of two things: an opportunity to improve and futureproof your building, or an unwanted cost, especially in the current climate. 

What’s next for Energy Performance Certificates? 

Looking into the future, the Government is expected to issue the following changes: 

  • 2025 – all leased commercial properties will need a valid EPC. If the existing lease has an expired EPC, the property owner(s) will be required to apply for a new one 
  • 2027 – All lodged EPCs will need to achieve a minimum rating of C 
  • 2030 – Further efforts are expected to see the minimum requirement to increase to a B rating 

Each change in the regulations will have a two-year “compliance window”, which will allow for owners to reach the necessary band – or at least demonstrate that the building has achieved the closest it can to that rating within the boundary of cost-effectiveness. So: 

  • Owners will have between 1 April 2025 – 1 April 2027 to achieve an EPC rating of C 
  • Owners will have between 1 April 2028 – 1 April 2030 to achieve an EPC rating of B 

If your property is not compliant with the new regulations, you could be on the receiving end of a fine of up to £150,000. 

As the government strives to hit their Net Zero target by 2050, there will be a heightened demand to rent and occupy low-carbon spaces, especially in commercial areas. ‘Green’ workspaces and retail units are helping organisations stay on the right side of the climate change. Property owners need to act now and make those changes to benefit all parties both in the short term for business and the long term for our futures. 

If you’re unsure how the changes will affect you or want to explore the energy efficiency solutions that you could make to your property, please contact our building consultancy team. 

Get in touch with the Eddisons team

Please contact us for more details and information

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