Skip to main content
Building control

Energy performance of buildings

  • Energy Performance Certificates

    Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) show the energy performance rating of buildings.  EPCs are required for newly constructed buildings or buildings advertised for sale or to rent and a copy must be uploaded onto the Energy Performance of Buildings Register (link opens in new window).

    The EPC enables comparison of the energy efficiency, carbon emissions and possible fuel costs of buildings of the same type for potential owners, buyers or tenants of a building. It also provides recommendations on how to improve the energy efficiency of the building.

    You can find an accredited energy assessor in your area on the Energy Performance of Buildings Register.

    You can find more information about EPCs on the Department of Finance website (link opens in new window).

  • Displaying of Energy Performance Certificates

    There is a requirement for some commercial buildings that are visited by the public to display an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). 

    It is the responsibility of the building occupier to display an EPC and must be displayed in colour and at least A4 in size. It needs to be located in a prominent place that is clearly visible to members of the public who visit the building. 

    For more information, visit the Department of Finance website (link opens in new window).

  • Display Energy Certificates

    Display Energy Certificates (DECs) inform visitors to public buildings about the energy use of buildings.  A DEC shows the energy performance of a building based on actual energy consumption for the previous 12 months.  A DEC must be accompanied by a valid advisory report which contains recommendations for improving the energy performance of the building and is valid for seven years.  The DEC must be uploaded onto the Energy Performance of Buildings Register (link opens in new window).

    An energy assessor, accredited to produce DECs for that type of building, is the only person who can produce a DEC and Advisory Report for your building.  You can find an accredited energy assessor in your area on the Energy Performance of Buildings Register.

    For more information about DECs, visit the Department of Finance DEC questions and answers (link opens in new window). 

  • Air-conditioning

    All air-conditioning systems with an effective rated output of more than 12kW must be regularly inspected by an energy assessor within five years of its installation and then at five yearly intervals. 

    The relevant person must ensure that an air-conditioning inspection report (ACIR) has been produced and uploaded onto the Energy Performance of Buildings Register (link opens in new window). The relevant person must also have a copy of the most recent air-conditioning inspection report at all times. 

    You can only get an ACIR for your building from an energy assessor accredited to produce an ACIR. You can find an accredited energy assessor on the Digital Communities website (link opens in new window).

    For more information about what is an air-conditioning system under the regulations, please visit the Department of Finance air-conditioning inspections (link opens in new window).

  • Penalties

    The penalty for each offence varies and is laid out in the Energy Performance of Buildings Regulations (NI) (link opens in new window). For example:

    • for failing to provide an EPC or failing to display, offenders can be fined up to £200 (dwellings) and £500 - £5,000 (any other property)
    • failing to display an EPC the penalty is £500
    • for failing to display a valid DEC at all times in a prominent place clearly visible to the public the penalty is £500
    • and for failing to have possession of a valid DEC advisory report the penalty is £1,000 and
    • for failing to have your air-conditioning system inspected or failing to have a copy of the ACIR the penalty is £300
  • More information

    If you have any queries about the energy performance of buildings, please call us on 028 9027 0650 or Freephone 0800 022 3004. 

    You can also find further information on the Building Control NI website (link opens in new window)

Contact us

For more information and advice, get in touch.

buildingcontrol@belfastcity.gov.uk

Call 028 9027 0650 Freephone 0800 022 3004

Building Control, Ground Floor, Cecil Ward Building, 4-10 Linenhall Street, Belfast, BT2 8BP

Read aloud icon Read aloud