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Energy Performance Certificates (England) | England | Pre-tenancy (England)

Timing of EPC certificate for a new tenancy

24 Jun 2021 | 1 comment

What is the latest point at which an EPC certificate be provided to a new tenant? For example, can the tenancy agreement be signed; can I perform the check-in inventory; can I hand over the keys; can the tenant move in, before providing the EPC certificate?

The background to my question is that my EPC ran out in the middle of marketing property, and so I have arranged for a new EPC to be issued. In the meantime, I have found a suitable tenant and would like to enter into an AST with the tenant. Further, the tenant is requesting to move in on the day that the EPC assessment is being undertaken (Monday) I have been told that I won’t receive the certificate until the following day (Tuesday). I was hoping to perform the check-in and hand over the keys on the Monday, but the tenancy agreement won’t start for another two days (Wednesday), such that I can send the tenant the EPC before the actual start of the tenancy (unfortunately, I’m not able to be at the property for a number of days after the EPC assessment is undertaken, which is why I’m looking to hand over the keys in advance).


1 Comment

  1. guildy

    There are two stages to giving an EPC.

    First, it must be given “at the earliest opportunity” which means on the website advert (if advertised online) and at any viewing. Assuming that rule was done, then that’s stage 1 complete because it was valid at the time of marketing. One of the rules is that you can’t market without a valid EPC (but you’re okay on that because it was valid).

    Stage two is that the “ultimate tenant” must be given a copy (even though they may already have one from the viewing or advert). This stage is usually done at the time of granting the tenancy.

    For the purposes of being able to serve a section 21, there’s no time limit to stage 2 (ultimate tenant) as long as before serving notice.

    Therefore, from what you describe, we think you’re fine as long as the new one is given straight away when you’ve got it.

    From what’s described, it was marketed with a valid EPC, and the ultimate tenant will be given one. As such, that’s the rules complied with.

    There is a small argument that marketing should have been paused from the day the EPC expired, but that’s under EPC rules and doesn’t affect service of the section 21 later.

    We would ensure with some paper trail that you can show the prospective tenant got both the first EPC and the second, and all should be good. They’re probably likely to be the same rating anyway unless there’s been some significant change in-between.

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