Fuel prices still not reflecting reality
The current energy crisis has brought Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) in to the spotlight with many people questioning the estimated energy costs for their homes.
To give some background the EPC displays many different metrics, with the majority based on fuel costs factors.
The energy efficiency rating (the A to G scale) is based on fuel prices that are fixed and will only change at the point of when the overarching methodology for the EPC changes.
The estimated yearly energy costs are derived from fuel prices that are averaged over a 3 year period and change on a six monthly cycle. In January these prices were updated with increases to all fuels including mains gas and electricity. The below table shows the difference between these two fuel types over the last two years;
|Electricity (Standard tariff)||19.22p/Kwh||22.55p/Kwh|
The 2023 prices are still much lower than the governments price guarantee from October last year which saw mains gas jump to 10p/Kwh which is a 57% difference and standard tariff electricity increase to 34p/Kwh which is a difference of 33%.
Elmhurst has raised this issue with government and highlighted that stakeholders are questioning the creditability of the EPC.
Elmhurst’s Head of Operations, Josh Wakeling, comments, “Over the last 12 months we have seen a significant increase in the number of homeowners contacting our support teams raising their concerns over the validity of their EPC. In some instances rightly stating that the estimated costs are a third of what they are currently paying. We know that this is a complex issue to solve but if government are building policies around the EPC the fuel costs must be brought in line with what is happening in the real world.”
In addition to the above, Elmhurst has been campaigning for some time for an overall redesign of the EPC. EPCs for homes were first introduced in England and Wales in 2007 as a cost metric. The A to G rating simply shows how cheap or expensive a home might be to run. But nothing more.
Despite the current fuel price crisis, Government and public interest now goes far further than just cost. Elmhurst would like to see a more comprehensive and informative EPC, rather like food nutrition labelling. An EPC should clearly show energy consumption, energy cost, and carbon emissions. These are the things everyone now cares about.