FAQ: What is a Building Energy Rating (BER)?

FAQ: What is a Building Energy Rating (BER)?

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FAQ: What is a Building Energy Rating (BER)?

moving house costs BER certificateEvery property in Ireland now needs a Building Energy Rating (BER) certificate prior to going on the market for sale or to let. A BER certificate is an assessment and rating of your property’s energy efficiency. It lets a new owner or tenant know in advance roughly how energy efficient your property is.

Depending on the person, that might mean (a) how much it will cost to live in (heat, electricity etc); or (b) how much it will cost the planet… We’re mostly concerned with (a) but with a little bit of a good karma eye on (b)!

It’s similar to the energy rating chart you will get when you buy a new fridge or any other major appliance. They all come with a rating to tell you how expensive they are to run. Well, now your house has the same rating.

When do I need it?

 If you are a property owner and you are considering selling or renting out your property, you must have a BER certificate before you can put it on the market.

That means before you get your property up on Daft.ie or MyHome.ie – or any other advertising or listing medium – you must have had a BER assessment carried out and a rating completed.

It applies even if you are selling your property yourself or through an agent. It has to be represented on any advertisement for your property (brochures, window displays, newspaper and magazine advertising).

As a buyer, you are entitled to ask an agent or vendor to see a copy of their BER certificate.

How do I get one?

Fortunately your agent should be able to recommend a trusted and reliable assessor. We have a very efficient and reasonable assessor who does most of our client’s properties, but you are at liberty to find and hire your own assessor if you prefer.

To complete the assessment, the assessor has to inspect the property, where they measure the internal volume of the house and complete a series of checklists that take into account all the features of the property (heating system, insulation, glazing etc.) It takes about 30-60 minutes and they should return the results within 1-2 days.

They cost between €150 to €250 depending on the size of your property.

How does it work?

BER RatingEach house is assessed and comes out with a score on a range of A1 to FHere is a rough guide to what houses have wisahich rating:

  • A1 – brand new, highly efficient purpose built house (such as Passive House).
  • A2 – as above, still a very high standard to attain.
  • A3 – most new urban homes, usually includes solar panels.
  • B1 – a modern 10-20 year old property, with additional efficiency improvements.
  • B2 – a modern or retrofitted property, depending on the age of the house and extent of improvements.
  • B3 – as above, depending on the age of the house and extent of improvements.
  • BER RatingC1 – A common 15-20 year old property with double glazing and attic insulation but no other measures.
  • C2 – A well-built rural property with oil-fired heating, insulation and efficient heating.
  • C3 – A typical apartment score in an 10-15 year old development.
  • D1 – A 20-40 year old house with double glazing, gas boiler and some insulation.
  • D2 – As above but with just double glazing, older boiler.
  • E – A 30-40+ year old house with no improvements or double glazing.
  • F – An older property, barely a shell with single glazed windows and no insulation.
  • Exempt – Listed historic buildings or derelict properties are exempt.

If you want to know more visit the SEAI (Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland) who manage the whole system: www.seai.ie/Your_Building/BER/

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Find Out More:

  • What does my BER rating mean?
  • How is a BER rating assessed?
  • Which house has which BER rating?
  • Does the BER rating effect the value of my house?[/alert]

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Ben Thompson

A qualified Chartered Surveyor with a decade of experience with some of the world's most prestigious property companies, Ben leads our Blackrock sales team and pioneers our marketing platform.

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