EPC guidance for commercial property owners and investors

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If you’re an owner, investor or manager of commercial properties and asset portfolios then you’ll be aware of the new EPC regulations which will stop landlords from leasing commercial buildings in England and Wales which are not sufficiently energy efficient.

The content throughout this site aims to guide you through the recent and upcoming changes for commercial property and help you to ensure that your portfolios are compliant. You can also download our guide to EPC, produced with WSP | Parsons Brinkerhoff.

Workman’s Environmental Director, Vicky Cotton can be contacted directly using the Q&A section below to answer your specific queries on any aspect of the EPC regulations, or indeed your environmental initiatives.

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Scotland’s Energy Efficiency Programme, S63 (SEEP)

Since 1 September 2016 owners of large (more than 1,000m2) non-domestic properties in Scotland are now required to assess their property and produce an action plan regarding the energy efficiency of the property for sale or letting. The owner must then either improve the building within a specified period or report annually on its actual energy use, until such time as the improvements are complete.

Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES)

In England and Wales the MEES regulations are being introduced in two stages. From 1 April 2018 it will not be possible to grant a lease on a non-domestic building in England and Wales to a new tenant or renew a lease with an existing tenant unless the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) for the property meets the minimum E rating. From 1 April 2023 all other rented property must achieve a minimum E rating.

Key Dates

  1. From 1 September 2016 owners of large (more than 1,000m2) non-domestic properties in Scotland will be required to assess their property and produce an action plan regarding the energy efficiency of the property for sale or letting.

  2. From October 2016 a national database will be made available for landlords to register exempt properties. Exemptions will apply for a maximum of five years, at which point the property must be improved to a minimum E rating or an application made for a further five year extension.

  3. From 1 April 2018 it will not be possible to grant a lease on a non-domestic building in England and Wales to a new tenant or renew a lease with an existing tenant unless the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) for the property meets the minimum E rating.

  4. From 1 April 2023 all other rented property must be a minimum E rating.

Ask our Expert

Vicky Cotton
Environmental Director, Workman

As Workman’s Environmental Director I am responsible for all aspects of environmental reporting, from client reporting to the firm’s own activities. I work closely with clients to identify, manage and implement EPC strategies across their portfolio. Having previously spent 14 years as a Property Manager I am able to take a pragmatic and commercial approach when advising on the strategy to be applied for benchmarking, CRC and ESOS, MEES and S63 (SEEP).

If you can’t find the answer you’re looking for here please get in touch, I’d be delighted to help you.

 

Latest Q&A

  1. Q. If we already have an EPC and on letting, the Agent gets another with a lower rating, which one stands.

    A. The latest EPC lodged on the register always stands and the older one falls away regardless of whether it is worse. Once lodged there is no going back! It is therefore vital to know what you have and to actively manage the process of obtaining EPC’s. We recommend that the Landlord controls this through their one appointed consultant – not the tenant or any other third party.

  2. Q. Once we have been through our EPC’s are we then ready for April 2018?

    A. A. Whilst we recommend that our Clients know what they have and do start to look at the gaps across the portfolio, things will change continually between now and April 2018. Tenants will fit out units and these need monitoring and controlling to ensure they do not impact on the EPC. Properties will come into the portfolio and units will come back which will need reviewing. This is definitely an ongoing project!

  3. Q. How do I know if my EPC is accurate?

    A. You don’t need to have EPC’s for every property and/or unit under the MEES legislation – they are however required for every sale or letting. However our advice is that you can’t accurately identify risk until you know what rating units have, especially if they are likely to be let over the next few years. If they are rated F or G they will become unlettable at that point and it may therefore be prudent to know and understand that risk whilst there is time to remedy it.

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