NHBC Foundation welcomes EPC revisions

Sustainability research body The NHBC Foundation has welcomed the Department for Communities and Local Government’s (CLG) decision to revise domestic energy performance certificates (EPCs).

CLG’s policy update declares that EPCs will become shorter, easier to understand and will use plain English. The content will also focus on potential costs and savings of different energy efficiency measures, rather than CO2 emissions. According to NHBC, these changes are to be implemented as a result of research conducted on behalf of CLG by Consumer Focus, which found that many consumers did not understand the information presented in the previous EPC.

NHBC Foundation’s own research, entitled Today’s attitudes to low and zero carbon homes – views of occupiers, house builders and housing associations, was launched in February and confirms the findings from Consumer Focus.

Ted Chandler, NHBC Foundation, said: “We are delighted that the findings of CLG’s research have resulted in positive action for consumers. As the EPC is mandatory during the purchase of a new home, it has the potential to deliver important information to prospective homeowners, helping enable them to make informed decisions about how best to reduce a home’s energy usage.

“The NHBC Foundation research showed positive attitudes towards low and zero carbon homes and new technologies, but also highlighted some confusion around actual energy savings, which we hope revisions to the EPC will address.

“There are a total of eleven recommendations within NHBC Foundation’s report, and we would hope that Government and industry alike will now seek to deliver on the other ten, helping consumers to understand and engage with low and zero carbon homes.”