Minimum EPC rating now required for Solar Panels

Sunday 1st April 2012

As of today, homeowners wishing to install Solar Panels must ensure that their property has an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of at least ‘D’ to receive the current Feed-in Tariff (FIT) rate of 21p.

Properties that fall short of the minimum EPC requirement will be eligible for the lower FIT rate of 9p, for each unit of electricity generated, unless they can be upgraded to achieve an EPC rating of at least ‘D’.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) have implemented the new EPC criteria to make efficiency measures part of the requirement for UK Solar Photovoltaic (PV) installations:

“We want to ensure that Solar PV is considered as part of a holistic approach to carbon reductions in buildings that prioritise energy efficiency”.

DECC estimate that half of domestic UK properties will currently meet the minimum EPC requirement; however, for those that don’t there are low-cost upgrade measures available. These include Loft and Cavity Wall Insulation, for which there are Government Grants available to all homeowners and private tenants to cover up to 100% of the cost.

Installing Solar Panels will also help contribute towards a property’s EPC rating; however, whether they will help it to achieve a rating of at least ‘D’ should be assessed before installation.

For properties that cannot achieve the minimum EPC requirement, even after upgrading, a FIT rate of 9p will still allow the cost of investment to be recovered well within the 25 year FIT period and could still potentially offer an attractive return.

Read more about the new EPC Requirements for Solar Panel installations.

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