Does my home need an EPC before it can be sold?

Updated: October 8, 2018

With a few exceptions, all property must have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) applied for before it can be marketed for sale in the UK.

Energy Performance Certificate

If you’re looking to put your property on the market or if you plan to rent it out, you’ll need to know about Energy Performance Certificates.

Since 2008, it has been a legal requirement to have an EPC. Once you’ve been awarded your certificate, it will stay valid for 10 years. 

What is an EPC?

An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is a record of how energy efficient your property is.   The EPC is issued after a surbey has been conducted by a Domestic Energy Assessor (DEA).

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What will my EPC show?

Your property will be given a rating from A to G, where A is the most energy-efficient, and G is the least energy-efficient. This rating usually comes in the form of a coloured bar chart, similar to one you may find when purchasing new household appliances. 

As well as providing you with a rating, your EPC will also advise you on how you can make your property more energy efficient.

Your EPC will identify the areas in your house that have the potential to save you money on your fuel bills, such as:

  • Light fittings
  • Heating system
  • Wall and loft insulation
  • Windows
  • Solar panels
  • The size of your living space
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How can I get an EPC for my property?

Your property needs to be assessed by an accredited Domestic Energy Assessor.

The EPC Register lists of accredited Domestic Energy Assessors near to where you live. However, your Estate agent will most also offer this service - often for free

Once you have your EPC, it will be held in the public domain on the EPC Register. Through this database, potential buyer's will be able to view your EPC.

You can also compare how energy efficient your home is compared to other properties in your neighbourhood.  

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Are there any properties that do not need an EPC?

The vast majority of domestic properties being put up for sale will need an EPC, however there are some exceptions:

  • Residential buildings used less than 4 months a year
  • Temporary buildings to be used for less than 2 years
  • Places of worship
  • Some listed buildings 
  • Holiday accommodation rented out for less than 4 months a year 
  • Some agricultural buildings or industrial sites
  • Some buildings that are due to be demolished
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Can I sell my property without an EPC?

Yes you can, as long as you have ordered your certificate before putting your property on the market.   Failure to do so could result in a fine.

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How much is an EPC?

EPC's are not generally that expensive - in the region of £50- £100.  Of course every bit helps when moving home so shopping around could save you a few  pounds.

If you are selling through an Estate Agent, try to get them to absorb the cost.  They usually will as they want your business.

Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher

About the author

Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.

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