How to improve your EPC rating
Whether you’re a homeowner or landlord, there are plenty of reasons you might be looking to improve EPC rating in your home. In 2018, it was decided that all rental properties needed to meet a minimum rating on the EPC scale from “A” to “G”.
That minimum is currently an “E” rating, and this could be raised to a “D” or “C” in the years to come. It’s also useful to remember that should you improve energy efficiency in your home, you’re also likely to cut running costs over time and attract that ever-growing population of eco-conscious tenants.
But won’t such improvements cost a lot of money? Well, there are all kinds of measures you can take to improve an EPC rating, some small, some big. It doesn’t need to cost much, and some adjustments won’t even take up much of your time.
So whether you’re simply looking to comply with government standards or reduce your carbon footprint, step this way and we’ll take you through your options.
What is a Good EPC Rating?
Before we get going, let’s review the basics! EPC, how is it calculated?
First, an accredited assessor will visit your property, and award points for things like insulation (which keeps the heat in) or LED light bulbs (that use less energy). There are 100 points up for grabs and these will place you in an EPC rating band from “A” (most efficient) to “G” (least efficient).
An “A” rating is the best of the best, like a big gold star for your home. While a “G” rating means your home is about as energy efficient as a cardboard box. Not literally but you may want to change how you’re living, asap!
As for the question of what is a good EPC rating? Well, the answer is more about what EPC rating works for YOUR home. While newer properties might be capable of that top-class “A” rating, some older properties just aren’t built for more than a “B” or “C”. That’s because there are improvements you might not be able to make depending on the design and structure of your home.
If you check out your Energy Performance Certificate, you’ll notice that there’s a “current” and “potential” rating. That potential rating will tell you what’s a good EPC rating for your property. It’s fairly simple to understand.
How to Improve EPC Rating.
So let’s say your property is currently rated “F” and you’re wondering how to bump it up to an “E” or even a “D”. Here’s our handy guide on how to improve energy efficiency in your property:
Consider double or triple glazed windows.
A huge amount of energy goes towards keeping your house warm and cosy. But if heat quickly escapes through your windows, then that energy is largely going to waste. Most homes have double glazing these days, but if yours doesn’t, making the switch could boost your property’s EPC rating by 5-10 points.
Triple glazing is a step further, but quite a bit more costly. It can keep you toasty in the winter months though. Might be worth looking at if you have some spare funds available.
Make the switch to LED light bulbs.
Switching to LED bulbs can be a quick and easy fix if your property is teetering between ratings. That’s because the traditional halogen light bulbs are less efficient. If you’re unsure what you’re using, just check the wattage written on the bulb. Anything over 10W will most likely be halogen, while anything under 10W is likely LED. Replacing these old bulbs is a fairly inexpensive way to improve your EPC rating and decrease your energy bills in the process.
Our parent company: Mid-Tech Services, offers lighting upgrade service for domestic and commercial properties so be sure to check them out and our lighting case study for German car manufacture: Porsche!
New insulation in your walls or roof.
This is one of the most effective measures to improve your EPC rating, but it can come with a hefty price tag. Properties with poor insulation won’t retain heat well, think of chilly school gyms and old, brick farmhouses. Generally, the older the property, the more you’ll need to spend.
For newer properties with cavities between the walls and just under the roof, it could set you back £300 – £500. But for old stone walls and more complicated structures, the cost can be as high as £20,000. Ouch!
Go green with renewable energy.
Homes with a renewable energy source have become pretty desirable in recent years. Solar panels or a heat pump should improve your EPC rating, save you a great deal in energy bills, and add value to your home. It’s an investment for sure but when you add in the bonus of doing something good for the planet, you might just find it’s worth it.
Make sure you checkout our list of pros and cons of renewable energy and why this might be the perfect choice for you!
Invest in a new heating system.
Old, inefficient boilers are the single most common reason that homes fall short in EPC ratings. There are newer models available these days that are significantly more efficient and an upgrade could increase your EPC rating by as much as 40 points.
Our handy Air Source Heat Pumps can operate 3x more efficiently than a gas boiler. This means that it can turn electricity into 3 times more heat for your property than a gas boiler. These figures can be even higher when paired with some smart heating tech but more on that next.
If you want to check out more fascinating stats about air source heat pumps vs gas boilers, make sure you click the link!
Install a smart meter.
Simply put, smart meters help you keep an eye on how much energy you’re using. It’s a good incentive each month to put a nice, thick jumper on rather than turn up the heat, or turn the TV off if you walk away to take a phone call. Over time, these small adjustments will conserve the amount of energy you use, which is better for your bank account and the environment. A smart meter can increase your EPC rating because it shows your commitment to monitoring and conserving energy.
A Final Few Tips...
If you’re worried about having to make improvements that you can’t afford, you should know there’s a spending cap in place if you need to meet the minimum “E” rating. You can never be asked to spend more than £3,500 on improving your home’s energy efficiency, and if that doesn’t get your rating up to an “E” then you can apply for an “all improvements made” exemption via GOV.UK.
Want to start cutting your emissions and improve your EPC rating as soon as possible? Our team can provide you with air source heat pump quotes and site surveys and all you have to do is get in touch with us, and you can get a head start on the UK’s heat pump revolution.
After all, Your Green Future Starts Here!
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