The new law has now been approved. From June 1 2013 property owners have to provide buyers or tenants with an energy performance certificate (EPC) in Spain. The EPC must include objective information about the level of energy efficiency of the building so that potential purchasers and tenants can compare it with others.
The EPC will contain an energy rating for your property according to a scale. ‘A’ will represent the highest level of efficiency and ‘G’ the lowest. The rating will take into account the level of consumption of electricity, water and gas.
Which property does this apply to?
The EPC must be obtained for property in Spain that:
- Is to be sold
- Is to be rented out to a new tenant for more than four months
The EPC does not have to be obtained for:
- property that has a floor area of less than 50 square meters
- buildings that are purchased for major renovation or demolition
- buildings or parts of buildings that are used for less than four months a year
- property where there is already a rental contract in place
- property where a rental contract is signed for less than four months
The landlord or owner must make a signed declaration if they consider the property to be exempt. This declaration should be included in the sale or rental contract as applicable.
Who is responsible?
The responsibility lies with the property seller or with the developer in the case of a new property. They are also responsible for the certificate’s renewal every 10 years. The original certificate should be presented by the seller when the property is put up for sale. In the case of a new rental contract, a photocopy should be attached to the contract.
Advertising material must clearly show the allocated energy label when applicable. From June 1st estate agents must include details of the EPC on any advertising such as billboards, posters, on the internet and brochures.
An EPC can be signed by a qualified technician who has the authorisation to do this. This might include an architect, technical architect, engineer or technical engineer.
A register must be compiled by each Autonomous Community. This is a universal requirement across the country, although some communities might have difficulty operating it within the current time scales as they have not yet begun to put the process in motion.
Autonomous communities have three months in which to compile their registers. To have provided longer e.g. a window of six months, a new law would have to be written.
If it is discovered that you haven’t obtained the necessary certificate there are some stiff penalties. Your Autonomous Community will have a team of inspectors responsible for checking that the correct certificates have been obtained. Different levels of penalty will be imposed according to the severity of the offence.
The proposed fines are hefty and the law has many implications. Because of this we are expecting that there will be a period during which the law will be allowed to settle down before the strict application of penalties will take place.