We were reading in the Property Week (27th May edition) just how unreliable an EPC rating can be. This matters because from 2018 when new minimum energy efficiency regulations (MEES) start to apply, investors won’t be able to grant a lease of a property (and that includes a lease renewal) with an F or a G rating unless they qualify for a temporary form of exemption. The article reflects what we feared which is that the cheapest EPC will generally have had less data inputted and will rely on default settings within the computer programme that generates the EPCs so making it easy (and probably cheap) to get a quick EPC but at a low rating.

As we have posted before it is advisable for investors to carry out a review of their EPC ratings to work out which properties need upgrading before 2018 using a reputable EPC assessor and as Property Week says, may be going further and auditing the existing “stock” of EPCs to see which have been carried out properly.

Buyers of investment properties may want to carry out their own EPCs rather than rely on those supplied by the sellers who may not have inputted the very best of information and over whose process they had no control. Similarly, banks will want to know that EPCs have been carried out satisfactorily before they lend as the 2018 deadline now is getting closer.