A long-overdue shake up of Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) should focus equally on energy consumption, cost and carbon emissions to make them more relevant, according to the UK’s largest accreditation scheme for energy assessors.

Elmhurst Energy also believes EPCs’ validity period should be cut from 10 to three years and re-issued whenever there is a change to the building which impacts its energy performance.

EPCs haven’t been updated since they were introduced in 2007 and last November the government published its EPCs for Buildings Action Plan which identified improvements to their efficiency and effectiveness.

It’s hoped that there will be an update this year but, in the meantime, Elmhurst has mocked-up a new style of energy report (see main pic), displaying estimated energy (kWh), carbon emissions (kg), and energy cost (£) used by each property, along with other improvements.

Funding mechanism

Elmhurst also suggests expanding and updating energy assessment methodologies to address the energy used to cool buildings as well as changing the funding mechanism in the government’s Energy Company Obligation programme so that it supports the whole house retrofit approach, including upfront assessments and planning to ensure the right improvements are made in the right order. 

stuart fairlie elmhurst epcs

Elmhurst MD Stuart Fairlie (pictured) says once EPCs are updated, governments can align regulations to the relevant metric, so that policy initiatives to tackle fuel poverty can focus on cost, while initiatives on reducing energy use could be measured by energy consumption, and climate change regulations could be based on a measurement of carbon emissions.

“Not since the 1970s has the UK had so many concerns about the price of energy and security of supply,” says Fairlie.

“Thankfully, unlike the 1970s, we have many of the carbon-reducing, fuel bill busting, energy efficiency solutions at our fingertips, if only we could implement them nationally. These changes feel more urgent than ever before.”

Read: Ultimate guide to the MEES and EPC regulations.

8 COMMENTS

  1. How strange – an energy assessor believes EPCs should be every 3 years instead of every 10 – no point reading any more with that slightly self-promoting “expert opinion”

  2. We all know that the EPC assessment is flawed – yet the Govt still expects landlords to use it as the basis for spending thousands on our properties. Until the legislation is published & the EPC assessment updated no sensible landlord will be doing anything of the sort.

  3. Cannot find one EPC person that says exactly the same as the next?
    Anyone else have this issue?
    In the case of upgrading heating, 4, yes 4 assessors say 4 different versions, so who do I trust?
    One person, after I questioned them on one point several times told me to just follow the EPC recommendations that were the opposite of what I was told by them in the first place. Can’t stop laughing suppose better than crying

  4. Elmhurst just looking for making money by always pushing epc requirements forever higher. Interesting that some of these insulation companies will only deal with benefit based customers tenants so that they get paid by government schemes and don’t do private paid work. I see this just like the garages that ask is this an insurance job or private as they make a fortune out of insurance…

  5. I agree about the current EPC, for example, there is no difference between ordinary and condensing boilers, or different types of glass and air gaps in double glazing. Funny that a company that provides these wants the time cut from 10 to 3 years!!!!!

  6. Yes totally agree I was told absolutely rubbish from one person, change your hot water tank as insolation not enough, and the next minute told just to lag it??? Same person.
    Told all double glazed windows are not good enough unless have large air gap and must have a readable label inside the glass.
    Yes and I keep coming back to heaters…
    Now being told storage heaters must exceed the quantity of panel heaters in a flat but that’s OK as only one HHR one needed and the other a normal one, must not put in any eco heaters as they think for themselves and perform better but will lower the EPC.
    My list goes on and on and on

  7. Same as when the government pushed diesel cars upon us, only to make a massive u turn a few years later changing excessive amounts for road tax and now say diesel being the most un-environmentally friendly.
    We need to stop being sheep

  8. Apart from lining their pockets, what REAL benefits does Elmhurst Energy sees in cutting frequency of EPC from 10 to 3 years. Are my properties like cars, with brake pads and tyres wearing out quickly?!
    One of my property is a high D house, unfortunately with solid walls. Tenants are more than happy with it and its warmth. Once the new regulation comes into force, I will either seeks exemption via surveyor opinion, or tenants refusal to have work done, or just sell it and reduce the PRS a bit more.
    No way Jose I am spending many thousands for a negligible improvement that would take decades to pay back.

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