Quick and (possible) cheap options to improve your EPC!

With EPC regulations getting stricter as time goes on, its important to keep an eye on your properties (whether a letting agent or landlord) to ensure you don't get caught out with a hefty fine!

The government have already announced that by 2022 they want to enhance the minimum EPC rating to be a C or D. So for all you letting agents, landlords and anyone else that is in the property industry, it's worth potentially making some slight improvements to bring your EPC up to this rating. Below is a list of a few things that can be cheap and may just get you the rating that you require.

Change your lights to LEL

Changing all your light bulbs in your property to LEL (Low Energy Lights) is unlikely to bring it up a huge amount. However, it is one of the cheapest ways to improve your rating.

Depending on where you shop this can be an inepxpesive exercise. LEL's are without a doubt more friendly to the environment and can reduce your bills.

Insulating your property

One of the biggest factors to improving your EPC is loft and wall insulation. An EPC is based on assumptions of the year that property was built. For example, if there is no access to your pitched roof, or its boarded over, then the DEA (Domestic Energy Assessor) will mark this 'as built'. Now, if your property was built circa 1900, then the assumption will be that there is no insulation in the loft. However, if the property was built in 2002, then the system will assume there is insualtion when the assessor has ticked 'as built'.

A quick way to get your EPC rating up in terms of the insulation, would be to insulate the loft and keep the evidence to the thickness of the insualtion. At least then if the DEA can't see the insulation, they can take the evidence and mark this down in the EPC. Also worth noting that most energy assessors are only insured to put their head and shoulders in the loft space, so if they are unable to measure the insualtion, the evidence will be very handy when producing your EPC.

Upgrading your boiler and heating system

This is the one of the biggest factors I have seen on site which will bring an EPC rating right down. Having an inefficient boiler or heating system can of course be bad for the environment and for your wallet. Not only that, it will drag down the rating of your EPC.

Having a new fan flued, condensing boiler can significantly improve your EPC. The average cost of installing a new boiler is approx £1,000 - £3,000. Considering a fine can be up to £5,000 it may be worth improving the heating system and in turn improving your rating.

If you do decide to install a new boiler, please install a programmer and room thermostat. Adding TRV's to radiators can also help. Managing your heating controls is a good way of getting a few more points up the chart!

Installing double or triple glazing

This isn't the cheapest option but in terms of heat loss, this is a big one. If you are looking to really keep your house warm in the winter I would think about having double glazing installed. Of course this will also improve your rating.

It is also worth keeping in mind that you may be in a conservation area and you may need to find out if you can change the windows at all. I work a lot around London, and in a lot of areas they still have the original windows and window frames in.

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