CLG assess cheap EPC providers and accreditation schemes

The Communities and Local Government (CLG) have sent a ‘shock’ letter to the accreditation schemes who oversee and monitor the quality of the Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs).

The CLG have highlighted and/or imposed:

  • poor quality and inaccurate EPCs
  • minimum quality assurance standards
  • additional disciplinary procedures for accreditation schemes

It has been reported that some Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) produced are “strewn with ‘schoolboy errors’ and glaring omissions” amongst other critical points highlighted in the letter.

Details of the individual points can be read here – New disciplinary procedures and quality assurance standards imposed

We largely welcome that the CLG have acted on improving quality within the industry though cannot help but feel it has come slightly late in the day. Those within the industry who have concerned themselves with the production of ‘accurate and correct’ EPCs have been under pressure to compete with ‘cheap EPC providers’  who primarily focus is being the cheapest in the market, often disregarding the quality of their EPC service to be the ‘cheapest’.

It is now clear and evident the downward pressure on price has had a detrimental affect on quality. With the ‘new’ enforcement, disciplinary measures and quality standards one would hope to see standards rise with the associated cost to a sensible level.

‘Cheap EPC providers’ seem to be continually under question though this development must put them further at threat. This comes soon after the Institute of Domestic Energy Assessors created a ‘blacklist of  cheap EPC suppliers’ they advise their members to avoid working for due to poor payment history to their members.

Energy assessors have for some time coined the phrase, ‘pay peanuts, get monkeys’ though it now seems evident that many of the monkeys are not even getting the peanuts that was agreed upon.

Unfortunately, the accreditation schemes have also become ‘victims’ of the price squeeze we have witnessed. They have quite often lowered their trade prices to domestic energy assessors for EPC lodgement fees; to compete and win new business from new energy assessors or those with other accreditation schemes.

Finally, CLG have decided to act on concerns in regard to lowering quality and hopefully this new impetus will give them further vigour to also look at other associated areas.

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