Why a good EPC rating will be more important this year

September 22, 2021
EPC Certificates are a key factor in selling your home

Why a good EPC rating will be more important this year

You’ve no doubt heard the news about global fossil fuel prices rising at an unprecedented rate. This will feed into all our energy bills in the coming months.

Ofgem Chief Executive, Jonathan Brearley said: “Regrettably, the increase in wholesale costs will feed through to this price cap and, although final analysis is not complete and other costs will also determine the overall level, it could add around £150 per household to the next level of the price cap. 

“The increase, which comes into effect on 1 October, will affect around 15 million households on variable or default rates and prepayment meters – half the population.”

What this means for home sellers

With increased electricity and gas prices, buyers are placing greater importance on the energy efficiency of their next property. Homes with a high EPC rating—A or B—are likely to sell faster, and for more.

A recent survey found:

  • Homes sold with an EPC rating A or B over the past years achieved a 10% price premium over properties with an EPC energy-efficient rating of D.
  • One in every 12 properties sold achieved an energy efficiency rating of A or B on its EPC. 47% of properties selling with a D rating.
  • 6% of re-sale properties sold achieved the A or B rating. But over 60% of re-sale properties have the potential, with improvements, to hit that grade.
  • As autumn approaches, the conversation in many households turns to extra layers versus heating on. Boosting your home’s EPC rating may well keep you warm and help boost your sale price.

What is an EPC rating?

EPC stands for ‘Energy Performance Certificate’. Any property placed on the market must have one.

The certificate includes two main charts. One shows the property’s ‘energy efficiency rating’. The other its ‘environmental impact rating’. For each of these criteria, the report shows your home’s current rating, and i potential rating.

Also, the EPC certificate will also supply a list of recommendations for improving your home’s energy efficiency. The potential rating is the estimated energy performance of your home if you make all these changes.

EPCs in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland are carried out by Domestic Energy Assessors and in Scotland by government-approved organisations. The EPC will be graded A to G, with A being the best. An EPC certificate can only be issued once an inspection has taken place. Assessments take about two hours to complete.

Once issued, an EPC will be valid for a 10-year period, although you can have it reviewed if you make improvements to your home. You may wish to have your home re-rated if you make structural changes (for example, an extension).

How can I improve the EPC rating of my property?

Unfortunately, improving the energy efficiency of your home can be an expensive process. Upgrading your boiler, installing double—or triple—glazing, and cavity wall insulation will lower the EPC rating, but they come at a high cost.

There are some simpler, and cheaper things you can do.

Upgrade your lighting to LED light bulbs

If your EPC rating is right on the margins, it won’t take much to lift it up one or two ratings. Switching halogen or incandescent light bulbs to LED light bulbs—which are much more energy-efficient and eco-friendly—could make all the difference.

Switching to LED lighting will save you money on your electricity bill and is a quick and easy way to improve your property’s EPC rating by between one and five points.

Top up the insulation in your loft

One of the most effective energy efficiency measures is topping up your loft insulation. New insulation can be a particularly efficient way of improving your score, especially if the insulation has been in your loft for a number of years. Increasing insulation in the loft to at least 270 mm thick will have a significant impact on how much energy escapes through the roof. 

Hot Water Cylinder Jacket

If you live in a particularly old property, you may well have a hot water cylinder or tank. A well insulated hot water tank can be as efficient as a combi-boiler. It will also be much cheaper than upgrading your old boiler. Although it won’t increase your rating by much (1 – 5 points on average), you’ll still get a boost from reducing the heat lost from the water tank.


The modern standard for insulation is around 50 mm of factory foam or 80 mm of loose jacket insulation. You might also want to consider ‘lagging’ your pipes too.

How do I arrange an EPC inspection?

If you are selling your home through House Fox, we can arrange a credited domestic energy assessor to review your home. Unlike other estate agents, we don’t charge any commission for this service. But there will be a charge to cover the assessor’s costs.

Please contact us for a quote.

This article may also interest you: I’m Selling My House, Do I Need An EPC?