How to improve your property’s EPC rating
So, you are putting your home on the market and want to put your best foot forward. A good energy performance rating is a sure-fire way to make certain your home is attractive to potential buyers or tenants.
Read on for our guide to Energy Performance Certificates and how to improve your property’s EPC rating.
What is an Energy Performance Certificate?
When a home is sold or rented in the UK, it must have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). An EPC measures the property’s energy efficiency and tells the person living in the property how much the bills for heating, hot water and lighting might be.
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An EPC also includes recommendations for improving the home’s energy efficiency. For each measure, the report tells you how much it will cost to install and estimates your annual savings.
What are the EPC rating bands?
It is easy to see how energy efficient a property is from its rating band. The most efficient homes with the lowest fuel bills are in band A and the least efficient homes in band G. The average rating for a home in the UK is band D. The current rating of the property is shown on a chart like this one. The chart also shows the rating that could be achieved if the measures for improving energy efficiency are implemented.
Why improve my EPC rating?
If you are selling or renting out your property, the last thing you need is an additional expense or yet another process to complete, so why should you spend time and money improving your EPC rating?
No one wants to buy or rent a property that is expensive to run and is draughty and uncomfortable to live in. A property with a good EPC rating will be more attractive to potential buyers and tenants.
Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) legislation stipulates that all rental properties have an EPC rating of E or above. The government has recently proposed new legislation, planned to take effect from 2025, requiring rental property to have a minimum C rating.
It is estimated that residential property was responsible for around 15% of greenhouse gas emissions in the UK in 2019. Reducing the environmental impact of our homes will go a long way towards protecting our planet and halting climate change.
6 ways to improve your property’s EPC rating
1. Top up loft insulation
The simplest way to improve your EPC rating is to ensure your loft insulation is at least 270mm thick. Good loft insulation will reduce the energy that can escape through the roof.
2. Add cavity wall insulation
Cavity wall insulation is suitable for properties that have been built with a gap between two layers of brick. Insulation can be blown into the gap from the outside of your property through holes drilled in the wall. These holes are later filled to match your brickwork. This is an easy and relatively cheap way to improve your EPC rating.
3. Replace an old boiler
An old and inefficient boiler will dramatically reduce your EPC score. Replacing it with an energy-efficient one is costly but will massively improve your rating. Add an intelligent thermostat and thermostatic radiator valves, and you could gain even more EPC points.
4. Install double glazing
Double glazing doesn’t add as many points as loft and wall insulation. But if your property isn’t already double glazed, installing it will boost your score by up to ten points.
Triple glazing is becoming more mainstream and will further reduce the amount of heat that escapes through your windows. However, if you already have double glazing, you will gain only a minimal improvement to your EPC rating by upgrading it to triple glazing.
5. Use renewable energy
Adding solar panels or ground source heat pumps to your home is another way to improve the energy rating of your property and save money on your energy bills.
6. Install energy-efficient lighting
Replacing your old traditional incandescent bulbs with halogen bulbs, compact fluorescent lamps or LED bulbs is a quick and easy way to score a few extra points on your EPC. Although their initial cost is higher, you save money because these types of bulbs use much less energy.
If you are selling or renting your property in Islington or Newington Green, we can help. Contact us to find out how much your home is worth.