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Energy performance enforcement

From 1st January 2010 a person selling a house, its landlord or its letting agent should have provided an Energy Performance Certificate for the property they’re selling, letting or advertising.

Energy performance certificate EPC LIKE many laws in Cyprus the Energy Performance of Buildings (Energy Certification of Buildings) Regulations 2009 (K.D.P.164/2009) has been generally ignored by all; that is until quite recently.

But it now seems that the authorities have at last woken from their Rip Van Winkle slumber as it has been reported that some estate agents have been fined for marketing properties without the required Energy Performance Certificates (EPC).

Owners who are planning to put their house up for sale must provide potential buyers with an EPC. If they are using the services of an estate agent to market their property, they must also provide their agent with an EPC.

Similarly, landlords are required to provide an EPC to new tenants as part of the letting process.

The law requires an EPC inspection to be carried out on all homes that are built, sold or rented after January 1st 2010. EPCs can only be issued by accredited specialists of the Energy Service of the Cyprus government and they are valid for 10 years

The maximum fine for advertising/selling/letting a property without an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is €30,000.

Accredited Specialists

The Ministry of Energy, Commerce, Industry and Tourism (MCIT) has published a list of accredited specialists (in Greek) as a spreadsheet that you may down by clicking here.

Readers' comments

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  • @Denton Mackrell on 2015/03/31 at 1:15 pm – Thank you for taking the time to investigate EPCs. I found the original article I published on the subject back in 2006 – Energy Certificates For Your Home

  • Denton Mackrell says:

    This updates my comment of March 28.

    I contacted 12 registered EPC providers and thus far only 4 have responded.

    Charges range from Euro 200-400 + VAT but typically 350.

    One very helpful provider advised that the law is now applied strictly for all properties whose plans were submitted after 2007. These have to achieve an energy class B. For properties built before then, the law also applies although, as yet, Land Registries have not been asking for EPCs from sellers – who knows if/when this friendly attitude might change?

    Pre-2007 properties do have a dispensation in that, instead of being forced to achieve class B, they can opt to carry out at least 2 of three kinds of energy improvement: roof insulation, UPVC double glazing, wall insulation, so long as the total energy saving is at least 40%. For such properties, the registered EPC provider first takes all the measurements and on-site data and creates a baseline EPC, which for many properties having no insulation etc etc will be class E. The owner then carries out the energy upgrades and the EPC is re-done to demonstrate the 40% improvement (or whatever % it is). For a ‘before and after’ situation, only one EPC fee should be charged not two.

    Government grants are available but do require submission of a whole heap of docs such as 1-year’s electricity bills, tax clearance, no criminal record. It is also unclear how efficient the grant approval system is. A grant cannot be applied for until the first baseline EPC has been done.

    I can’t attest to whether what I was told is complete or accurate or whether I have reported it accurately. However, hopefully it will be helpful.

  • Denton Mackrell says:

    I’m doing a mini survey of responses and charges for those on the list in Larnaca.

    Thus far, of the three consulting engineers I’ve approached only one has responded. He revealed that unlike UK (where the EPC services are commoditised and the charge band is fairly tight and modest), in Cyprus the regs require them to input a whole mass of measurements and data into a particular piece of software, which takes time i.e. he claims it’s labour intensive.

    When I suggested that a UK charge of, say, Euro 50-60 for a bog-standard 4-bed house was what I was expecting, he nearly fell off his chair. He said he would let me know by Monday his quotation which would be ‘a lot more than Euro 60’.

    The other titbit I gleaned was that up to now EPCs have only been normally done for (a) new properties built since 2010, and (b) for the developers (who presumably add the cost in to the price). EPCs for individual property owners and properties built before 2010 are rare. He was not aware of enforcement on such properties and commented that ‘of course’ it would be rare for any of them to be insulated. Does this suggest that enforcement is perhaps only being directed at post-2010 properties??

    Four people I know locally who have their properties on the market tell me that none of their agents has mentioned anything about EPCs.

    I have another dozen EPC providers in Larnaca to approach and will report back here on findings.

  • @Mike on 2015/03/25 at 11:24 am – It’s a spreadsheet. If you right click on the link you can download it and save it on your computer. You will need an application that will read Microsoft Excel files.

  • Mike says:

    I have been unable to get the Greek list of EPC Accredited Inspectors using your link suggested.

  • Aggis Demetriou says:

    The so called licensed real estate agent don’t have a clue what an EPC is, all they want is a 5% commission plus vat to sell your property When in fact their governing licensing body says all agents charge is 3%.

  • Ian Johnson says:

    Nigel would the lack of an EPC stop a pending sale

  • @Mutley 99 on 2015/03/23 at 6:11 pm – This is linked to the Energy Efficiency targets set by the EU, which Cyprus, along with Italy, Denmark, Malta and Sweden have signed up to.

    Many of the properties built during the boom years were pretty shabby and while people were prepared to buy them, there was no incentive to improve their quality. Times are changing.

  • @Mike Davies on 2015/03/23 at 7:43 pm – no worries – I’ve updated the article to include a link to the list of accredited specialists.

  • @Ian Johnson on 2015/03/23 at 7:36 pm – I am the office junior, unless you include the cat.

  • Mike Davies says:

    Apologies Nigel about the link. The thread I did not spot.

    I now have a copy from ETEK and there are 238 authorised businesses. A number are developers though. Lets see what cost are in reality.

    As well as EPC requirements for agents, you may also wish to investigate the legal responsibility for Anti money Laundering checks by licensed Agents. This I know is a real issue. I know of only 2 agents in my area the conduct these yet it is a MOKAS legal requirement.

    Again another legal requirement very few agents seem to undertake.

    Feel free to email me outside this thread to discuss.

    Regards

  • Ian Johnson says:

    Nigel maybe it’s worth while asking one your Office Juniors to give whatever agents a call as they do not seem bothered, maybe the compliance isn’t very strict after all.

  • Mutley 99 says:

    Am I the only one who finds this article yet another most ridiculous requirement for the purpose of Cyprus properties?
    How energy efficient is a house going to be without a damp course, wall and roof insulation, guttering and the list could go on.

    Frankly. I am relieved and grateful if we manage get through the winter staying dry with an added bonus of no fluffy damp coming through the walls.

    We purchased our home through a well known Paphos Estate Agent in 2011 and an EPC was never mentioned at any stage of the process.

    As per a previous comment made below. Title Deeds are far more important for a buyer and as to the €30,000 fine? They would be better off setting such a high penalty on motorists using their mobile phones while driving.

  • @Ian Johnson on 2015/03/23 at 5:08 pm – I’ve just uploaded a copy of the law, which anyone can download by clicking here.

    I don’t know how many estate agents haven’t been bothered to find out about EPCs – I published an article 3 years ago and another article announcing what was happening nine years ago. So they can’t complain they know nothing.

  • Ian Johnson says:

    West Coast Agency have just said they know nothing about this requirement, how many other agents are in the dark?

  • @Mike Davies on 2015/03/23 at 2:54 pm – I posted the link to a list of those who are licenced to carry out the work in an earlier comment.

  • Mike Davies says:

    Has anyone got a list of any person/firm actually able to do this work?

    I contacted the energy ministry to find out and they were hopeless. No list they could send me.

    An approved person must be a member of ETEK (the technical chamber), have a least 3 years relevant experience and have passed the relevant exam, likely only available in Greek. Another cartel and jobs for the locals perhaps!

    I don’t mind the need for this as it is an EU directive but limiting those who can conduct the survey and issue the certificate is wrong.

    Another EU qualified person cannot undertake the work, even though they may have done this in there own country for years . ETEK will likely not accept them and few can pass an exam in a language so few people speak.

    I cannot see any architect doing this for less than €300-€400.

    Lets just say there are 100,000 properties for sale and a qualified person can manage 3 of these a day, 5 days a week. Assuming there are no more than 50 people qualified at present, it would take 133 weeks to get everyone property done. Of course there will be more properties for sale and even more for rent!

    Do all agents just stop offering properties for sale and destroy and already weak market?

  • @Ian Johnson on 2015/03/23 at 11:40 am – Who is going to monitor? The Ministry of Energy, Commerce, Industry and Tourism’s Stasi.

  • @Stuart on 2015/03/23 at 11:34 am – IMHO I believe most people buying property would put a clean Title Deed at the top of their list of priorities – an EPC would be close to the bottom.

  • Ian Johnson says:

    Nigel, I agree that it’s the current owners obligation to initiate the EPC but it’s the Estate Agents responsibility to make sure that he has the EPC before he advertises the property hence the potential €30,000 fine if he fails to comply.

    No doubt most or all of the property adverts do not comply at the moment – who is going to monitor that aspect?

  • Stuart says:

    The idea behind EPCs is essentially as described by Ian Johnson in his 23 March comment at 09:41. However, when it comes to rental properties, landlords in the UK almost universally report that tenants are not the slightest bit interested in EPCs and are only concerned with the rent. This is regularly confirmed by our National Landlords Association and is quite understandable so the same situation is likely to prevail in sunny Cyprus.

  • Ian Johnson says:

    Last year 2014 an EPC cost me £47 for a 200sq m bungalow in Oxfordshire.

    It took the guy about 3 hrs and it really was good information that he came up with, but how he made a profit – who knows.

    I suspect the price in Cyprus will be much more.

  • Steve R says:

    Sorry Sue. This was a trade cost I used to pay for multiple certificates before we were registered. Due to the cut throat nature in the UK you can get EPCs and landlords gas certificates for even less now if you shop around. As a Gas Safe registered company we used to charge £25 plus £15 per appliance to issue a landlords certificate. Sadly those days are gone.

  • Sue says:

    We have had this for all properties in the UK for three years, I feel sorry for the people who have to provide a certificate in Cyprus, these agents can charge whatever they think fit, so watch it Cyprus! You’re going to be ripped off !!!

    I would disagree with Steve R, mine was £80.

  • @Ian Johnson on 2015/03/23 at 9:49 am – As I replied earlier, you can find a list of accredited specialists (in Greek) at MITRWO EIDIKEYMENWN EMPEIROGNWMONWN 12Mar2015.

    It’s also worth pointing out that it’s the vendor’s responsibility to provide the Estate Agent with an EPC.

  • Ian Johnson says:

    Carol any Estate Agent should be able to arrange this for you. But at an enhanced rate.

    However once these energy companies surface I suspect you will soon be able to contact them direct and probably pay about half the agents rate.

  • Ian Johnson says:

    I think Steve R last para is wrong as the EPC gives buyers a very good indication of the running costs of a home and what needs to be done to improve the running costs of their new home, it can save buyers a lot of money.

  • Steve R says:

    I am a Director of a UK company and part of our company makeup is the issuance of EPC,s. The ultimate goal for carrying out these surveys and issuing certificates is awareness to the purchaser or new tenants as to how efficient their homes are and how they can improve the efficiency thus saving money and reducing the carbon footprint.

    The average price for an EPC in the UK is £35. This barely covers the cost of going out to do the survey and administration plus all the training and registration to the various bodies. In an ideal world this would be a good idea but when you start to look at places like China and America, they produce more carbon in one day than Cyprus would produce in twenty years.

    The most efficient measures are to harvest the Sun and the Wind. Solar PV panels and wind farms go a long way to reducing carbon emissions as opposed to fossil burning power stations. The local electricity company are offering something like 6c per Kwh for electricity produced from solar PV panels which is fed back into the grid. I live in Paphos and overlook a wind farm with some 30/40 windmills.

    I just feel that the EU bureaucrats are going too far by making estate agents and homeowners issue EPC,s. Cyprus is doing more than its fair share towards reducing these emissions.This ridiculous law could effect an already failing property market.

  • @Ian johnson on 2015/03/23 at 8:03 am – There is no set price for the cost of an EPC in the UK.

    An owner or landlord of a small one bedroom flat would pay less than a person with a detached house, but even these prices can vary depending if you are buying the epc directly from the energy assessor or going through an estate agent. Using an agent will increase the cost of an EPC as they will be adding their own commission on top of the assessor’s quotation.

    Most companies will base their fee on the amount of bedrooms in the property and the distance they will travel to get there but the market for energy assessors is currently very tight so you should be able to get your EPC for a reasonable price. In some parts of the country this can be as little as £30 for a three bedroom house but you would expect to pay an average across the county of between £35-£55 for the same property.

    I believe that one company in Cyprus charges €2.00/m2!

    You can find a list of accredited specialists (in Greek) at MITRWO EIDIKEYMENWN EMPEIROGNWMONWN 12Mar2015

  • Ian johnson says:

    In the UK this costs about £50 but I bet it will be a lot more here in Cyprus.

  • Carol says:

    Where does one get one of these certificates?

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