It is a legal requirement in the UK for your home to have an energy performance certificate (EPC) when it is built and you will also need to provide a valid EPC if you are planning to sell or rent out your property. Originally part of the now defunct Home Information Packs, EPCs have been a requirement since 2007 and if you don’t yet have one you will need to apply to an accredited energy assessor to have them carry out a standard assessment procedure or SAP calculation. Your energy performance certificate basically tells others how well your property uses energy and is good guide as to what it will cost to run it.
Energy Efficiency is more attractive to buyers
Having a good EPC can be an attractive prospect for any potential buyers or tenants of your property and so it is within your interest to try and make this as low as possible. It will also give you the great feeling that you are using less energy and doing your bit for the environment.
So before you get the assessor in here are a few ways to improve your EPC.
Remove Any Portable Heaters –
If during your SAP calculation there is evidence that you are using addition heaters to heat your property then these will be recorded as secondary heating techniques and will be taken into account when determining your EPC. As these portable heaters will not be as efficient as your primary source of heating then it could result in a worse EPC.
Insulate Everything –
Insulation is a great way of keeping heat energy within your home and so if you have as much evidence of this as possible all over your home then you are sure to receive a better grade from your SAP calculation. Ensure that the loft is insulated and insulate your water tank as well. These are primary areas where your assessor will look when calculating your EPC. You could also install cavity wall insulation to ensure that you are keeping as much heat within your property as possible.
Install Energy Saving Bulbs –
Energy saving bulbs sometimes get a bad press because of the fact they take a while to warm up but they can improve your EPC and drastically reduce your energy consumption. It’s best to wait until your bulbs run out and then change them to low energy bulbs (which might cost a bit extra) so that you’re not wasting what’s left in your old light bulbs. Although doing this will not have a massive effect on your SAP calculation, it could be the difference if you are teetering on the border between two grade bands.
Replace Coal With Wood –
Wood is a lot more sustainable than coal and also has a better energy performance and so if you have an open fire in your home you could think about changing the type of fuel you use. Also, if you don’t have an open fire but you do still have an open flume then it is a good idea to block this up. This will mean less heat can escape and will leave you with a better EPC.
Give Full Access –
On the day that the assessor comes to carry out your SAP calculation you will need to ensure that they have full access to the whole of your property. If they can’t get into the loft or where the boiler is kept then they will have no option other than to assume that you property doesn’t have the appropriate insulation in these areas.