Energy performance certificates (EPCs)—what are they and when are they required?
Energy performance certificates (EPCs)—what are they and when are they required?

The following Environment guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Energy performance certificates (EPCs)—what are they and when are they required?
  • Brexit impact
  • What is an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?
  • EPC regulations
  • When is an EPC required?
  • What is a 'building'?
  • Buildings that don't need an EPC
  • EPC required—sale or letting
  • EPC required—construction or refurbishment
  • How long is an EPC valid for
  • more

This Practice Note explains how energy performance in buildings is regulated through Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs), when EPCs are needed, requirements under the key regulations governing EPCs—the Energy Performance of Buildings (England and Wales) Regulations 2012, SI 2012/3118 (EPC Regs 2012) and the Building Regulations 2010, SI 2010/2214 (Building Regs 2010), which implement the requirements of the recast Energy Performance of Buildings Directive 2010/31/EU (recast EPBD directive). This Practice Note is part of a series of notes on EPCs and minimum energy efficiency requirements (MEES).

Brexit impact

As of exit day (31 January 2020) the UK is no longer an EU Member State. However, in accordance with the Withdrawal Agreement, the UK has entered an implementation period, during which it continues to be subject to EU law. This has an impact on this content.

For further guidance, see Practice Note: Brexit—impact on environmental law and News Analysis: Brexit Bulletin—key updates, research tips and resources.

What is an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)?

Buildings are responsible for almost 40% of the UK's energy consumption and carbon emissions and so understanding how to reduce and manage this energy consumption is important in terms of achieving carbon reduction targets, as well as reducing the building's running costs.

EPCs promote the improvement of the energy performance of buildings and are intended to identify ways in which