Last updated: 20/10/20, 09:30
The health and wellbeing of our members, colleagues and the wider community remains our top priority in the midst of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
Elmhurst is the largest EPC accreditation business in the UK and we have the size, resources and processes in place to ensure that members can continue working, fully supported by our technical support teams.
Please do keep well and do not take risks.
We have created a list of FAQs which has been kept up to date in line with the most recent updates from government:
You may be aware that the government has introduced new local COVID alert levels in order to manage outbreaks of Covid-19. We anticipate that this approach to managing the pandemic will likely continue throughout the next few months. The national guidance with regards to house moving remains the same, which means that Energy Assessors can continue to visit properties for the purposes of energy assessments. However, we would advise that members at least consider local restrictions which could state otherwise.
The Welsh Government has issued the following advice related to home moving during this short lockdown period:
Can I move home?
Yes, if you can’t delay the moving date until after the short lockdown period is over. Associated activities, for example, removals processes, property preparation, handover of keys, surveys and valuations can also take place in line with guidance on working in other people’s homes.
Can home viewings take place?
No. Property viewings cannot take place during the circuit breaker period and high street estate agencies are required to close. Virtual viewings can continue.
Can a mortgage survey be done at my property?
Surveyors/Energy Assessors should not enter occupied properties during the lockdown period. Vacant properties can be entered and street level surveys can take place.
The full statement from the Welsh Government can be found here
MHCLG has released a Coronavirus (Covid-19): Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) Guidance. This document provides advice on meeting the regulatory requirement to secure a valid EPC during the Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak. It is important to note that this updated advice applies only In England.
The full Covid-19 home moving guidance released by Scottish Government, can be accessed here.
The document released by the Department for Communities in Northern Ireland, ‘Advice on home moving during Covid-19’, provides guidance on how everyone involved in the home move process must adjust their processes to ensure a safe return to market activity. There is a specific section within this document for Energy Assessors and Surveyors which confirms the following:
The full home moving advice from Northern Ireland's Deaprtment for Communities is available here.
The Environmental Agency for England, NRW for Wales and NIEA for Northern Ireland have agreed the following guidance for Lead Assessors:
Where site visits are not currently possible you can continue to complete the ESOS assessment without a site visit where sufficient energy use data and other information for the selected site is available. In these instances please keep the information and decision documents in you evidence pack. A recommendation could be that further investigation is necessary for a given site to identify energy savings and these will need to be re-scheduled for completion at an appropriate date.
For organisations who are still required to complete their Phase 2 ESOS commitments they should carry on with this as best they can. If they are unable to complete their ESOS commitments due to Covid19 restrictions then please let the appropriate regulators know as soon as possible.
Any organisation that has received an ESOS Enforcement Notice will still be expected to comply with the Enforcement Notice or inform the appropriate Regulator why they will be unable to comply.
Contact details are provided below.
England: Environmental Agency - ESOSemail@example.com
Northern Ireland: NIEA - firstname.lastname@example.org
Wales: NRW - GHGHelp@naturalresourceswales.gov.uk
Scotland: SEPA are currently reviewing this guidance.
Yes. An EPC for an existing building can only be lodged after an onsite visit and this continues to be part of the Scheme Operating Requirements (SOR) and Framework documents set out by government. Under established rules there is some small dispensation in England, Wales and Northern Ireland for domestic properties that are very similar, which is likely to be used for social housing providers; the full rules and details can be found in the ‘CLG Sampling Guidance doc, in the My Documents section of Access Elmhurst.
Yes. You should continue to submit evidence for all audit requests, however if you are unable to respond to a request by the due date (due to self-isolation or other mitigating circumstances), then please let the support team know at the earliest opportunity and we will do what we can to make alternative arrangements. We will endeavour to be as pragmatic as possible.
Elmhurst will maintain its normal billing and credit control processes meaning that those who pay by direct debit get 45 days to pay. If you have temporary difficulties in paying your bill you should contact us at the earliest opportunity and we should be able to make arrangements to help you through this difficult period.
We have now fully adjusted to remote working which is good news for members, as our support teams can once again answer your technical queries by phone. With this in mind, we would now encourage members to call rather than email us should they have any technical queries (details below).
As only a limited number of staff are operating from our Head Office in Lutterworth, we would advise members to avoid mailing letters and parcels there. In some cases mail may be returned to the sender causing delays and confusion for all. If practical please call our support teams for advice on the best way to send information.
DEA Support: 01455 883 257
NDEA Support: 01455 883 231
OCDEA Support: 01455 883 236
Accounts: 01455 883 254
Government is responding to the crisis with wide ranging support for businesses: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
Financial Support available to members may include;
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