We get asked all the time by customers whether or not it is possible to fail and EPC
In a word no – it is not possible to fail an EPC!
For an EPC done on a home, the property will be given a rating between 1-100, with 1 the worst performing property (energy wise) and 100 being the perfect house (normally producing its own energy and potentially adhering to the Passivhaus standard).
Even if you receive your report and it is a 1 (which puts it in G), you haven’t failed – it shows a potential buyer or tenant of the property that the home rates very poorly in terms of energy efficiency. What this tends to mean is that they will need to pay more for their heating during the winter months than a comparatively sized house with a higher rating.
Having said that, there are changes afoot that will begin to penalise people based on a low EPC rating, for example from 2016, landlords will not be able to rent out properties until the energy rating of the home is at least a band E. To be honest this is not particularly hard to achieve, but for some properties, landlords will need to take action, be it installing loft insulation or replacing the heating system with a more efficient one.
There is also talk of linking the EPC rating to council tax, but again this wouldn’t punish a person for an inefficient house, more reward a household with council tax reductions if they had a well performing property, energy efficiency wise.
For a commercial property, again it is impossible to fail the EPC. Unlike the scale for residential EPC which runs from 1- 100 (with 100 being excellent), for commercial EPC reports – the dwelling is measured between 1 (amazing) and 150 (a energy efficiency nightmare).
Both types of EPC provide recommendations on how to improve the energy efficiency of the property though, and while these are not obligatory, we do recommend considering them, but to confirm – no, it is not possible to fail your EPC!