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Could we see multiple EPCs per property?

Submitted by: MikeC (Admin) on 15-Sep-09 05:55:24 PM

With a general election looming, energy assessors are understandably concerned about Tory pledges to kill the Home Information Pack and knock-back the requirement on homesellers to provide an Energy Performance Certificate until the end of the sale process (See: Tories pledge even 'greater competition' in EPC market).

Looking at the wider picture, and taking into account the shared intentions of both Labour and Tory parties to retrofit existing homes with energy efficiency measures, I’m not exactly convinced, in the medium-term at least, that mortgage providers will allow such late disclosures in practice.

Make no mistake, carbon emission cuts allied to punitive measures to enforce them – and they will come – will incrementally impact both the desirability and value of properties.

And we know from the Heat and Energy Saving Strategy consultation that Govt. is consulting with the RICS to "explore the extent to which energy performance is reflected in the value of a property," and with energy efficiency featuring large within existing and future proposed building regs, it is clear that homes will come under the scope of mortgage valuations at some point.

I mean, you’d surely want to know whether the house you were thinking of buying had an inseparable debt attached to it, wouldn’t you? (I’m talking about the so-called ‘Pay as You Save’ (PAYS) scheme here of course, which seeks to tie the cost of retrofitting energy saving measures to the actual property, repayable over a long period – like 25 years.)

All the above, plus more, will be significant differentiators which will swing valuations one way or another; and mortgage providers will want to know - before approving that loan.

This perhaps begs a question then: who will pay for the EPC, if, under a Tory regime, one isn’t required until exchange?

If a homeseller is reluctant, or unable, to front-up costs – and we know from pre First Day Marketing days that competing estate agents were not exactly urging homesellers to pay for an EPC upfront - then the buyers’ mortgage provider may insist their client pays for it instead.

We are now led to the ridiculous position where a potential buyer owns an EPC – lodged on the HCR Register - before a mortgage offer is made, and before the buyer signs on the dotted line.

One final thought: if mortgage providers become the driving force under a Tory regime, the industry will likely see the re-emergence of panels.

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Posts: 1
Tory EPC policy
Reply #1 on : Wed October 07, 2009, 10:20:59
Grant Shapps the Shadow Housing Minister has confirmed in writing to me that they have reversed their policy. EPCs will therefore remain at the front of the process.

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