Since 1 October 2008, an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is required whenever a commercial building is sold or let.
Commercial properties coming onto the market after 1st October 2008 must have an EPC before they are marketed. Properties that were already
on the market prior to October 1st require an EPC by 6th January 2008 at latest or 'as soon as practicable' after sale or let if that occurs before that date.
A commercial EPC lasts for 10 years and can be transfered from owner to owner with the property.
There is a short list of commercial properties that do not require an EPC;
- places of worship
- temporary buildings with a planned time of use less than 2 years
- stand-alone buildings with a total useful floor area of less than 50m2
- industrial sites, workshops and non-residential agricultural buildings with low energy demand.
One EPC or multiple EPCs?
A. Selling or letting a building as a whole:
You can obtain an EPC for the whole building, even if that building has parts designed or altered
to be used separately with separate heating systems. If the building has a common heating system, the EPC may subsequently be used for any part of the building
offered for sale or let.
B. Selling, letting or sub-letting part of a building:
If the building has a single shared heating system there are 2 ways to comply;
- Get an EPC for the whole building, negotiating as necessary with any head landlord (which may be more economic for all concerned)
- Get an EPC for the part of the building you are selling, letting or sub-letting. If you are letting a floor for example,
you may get an EPC done for just that floor.
If you wish to sell, let or sublet a part which does not share a common heating system you will need a separate EPC for that part.
C. Residential accommodation:
Any separate residential accommodation that is self-contained will require its own EPC.
Residential space that can only be accessed via commercial premises (e.g. a house
with a shop in a downstairs room or a shop with accommodation where the
access is through the shop) will be assessed with the commercial premises as a
The government department responsible has produced a guide to EPCs and commercial property. You can download it here.