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Commercial property owners today need to be more aware than ever of the importance of energy efficiency ratings when it comes to their properties. As of 1st April 2023, new rules on energy efficiency under the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES) have made it a legal requirement for all commercial rented properties (aside from a limited number of exempt properties) to have an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) rating of at least E.
If you are a commercial property owner looking to improve your EPC rating, here are a few steps you can take:
1. Conduct an energy audit
The best way to determine the steps needed to improve your EPC rating is to conduct an energy audit. This involves an expert coming to your property to assess your current energy usage and identify areas where you can improve. This audit can include everything from the condition of the building’s heating and insulation systems, to the efficiency of lighting and appliances.
2. Improve insulation
One of the easiest ways to improve your EPC rating is to improve the insulation in your property. This can be as simple as fixing any gaps, leaks or cracks around windows and doors to prevent heat loss. Insulation doesn’t just apply to walls or ceiling cavities; upgrades to flooring insulation and internal insulation may also be considered.
3. Upgrades to utilities
Alternative sources of heating, such as heat pump and air source heating systems have received more attention in recent years due to their energy efficiencies. There may be easier ways to improve the efficiency of existing heating systems, however, such as the installation of smart controls or the creation of different heating ‘zones’. Both of these are relatively low cost solutions that can bring quick and significant energy savings.
Depending on the size of the property, a water recycling system could be considered. One relatively easy way of reducing energy output is to replace older lighting with LED light bulbs or panels.
4. Bear energy efficiency in mind at all times
With meeting minimum EPC ratings now a key concern for all property owners, any large scale works being undertaken by landlords or property owners should be done with energy efficiency in mind. For example, if significant repairs are required to the roof on an older building, it may be worth considering a re-roofing project that would improve the EPC rating of the property instead.
Lea Hough Chartered Surveyors are able to work with commercial property owners to plan a programme of works designed to improve EPC ratings. We can help to identify, scope out and cost suitable works. Where a series of works are required as part of a larger upgrade or refurbishment, our team can project manage these; ensuring they meet the desired standards and are delivered on time and in budget. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.
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