Monday, 6 April 2020

COVID-19: Energy Performance Certificates

The government has issued advice on meeting the regulatory requirement to secure a valid Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

The guidance states that:

The legal requirement to obtain an EPC before selling or letting a property remains in place and must be completed by an accredited assessor unless an exemption applies.

All reasonable efforts must be made to obtain a valid EPC for the building before the end of a period of 7 days starting with the day on which the building was first put on the market.

If all reasonable efforts have been made to obtain a valid EPC but this has not been possible (which must be a highly likely scenario in the circumstances), a further 21 days are allowed as a grace period. After this period, enforcement action can be taken by enforcement authorities in line with the regulations

EPC assessments should only be conducted in accordance with government advice on home moving during the COVID-19 outbreak and where the EPC assessment can be conducted safely.

If a property is vacant, an EPC can be carried out.

If a property is occupied, parties must endeavour to agree that the transaction can be delayed so that an EPC assessment can proceed when stay-at-home measures are no longer in place.

If moving is unavoidable and the parties are unable to reach an agreement to delay, and a valid EPC is not available from the register, an assessment may need to be conducted.

Social distancing must always be adhered to .

No assessments should take place if any person in the property is showing symptoms, self-isolating or being shielded.

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