Quality Assurance of Building Energy Certificates in England and Wales

For non-domestic energy assessments in England and Wales DLUHC has issued revised Scheme Operating Requirements (SORs) for producers of Energy Performance Certificates, Display Energy Certificates and Air Conditioning Inspectors. These requirements, effective from 1 July 2019, are to be implemented by ALL Energy Assessor Schemes to ensure and maintain consistency.

For further information on the SORs, please click here.

  • All assessors must sign the CIBSE Certification Code of Conduct, which also describes actions all schemes must take if Code of Conduct failures are revealed during QA activity.
  • All assessors must declare complaints received from customers and others to the Scheme or Schemes, who will be obliged to investigate.
  • A minimum of 2% of all EPCs (excluding L5 EPCs – see L5 SOR), DECs and ACIRs will be randomly selected for audit.
  • Assessors must provide the information requested within 3 working weeks of the request or have a clear reason for not complying with the request. Any energy assessor who fails to provide complete information will be suspended by their scheme.
  • Any audit failures i.e. not within the 5% or 10% error boundaries will automatically trigger a requirement for the assessor to withdraw the faulty certificate from the register and to re-lodge a corrected version. It will also trigger a request for a further certificate to be submitted for a targeted audit. There will be a charge for each additional QA check required subject, within reason, to the level of complexity.
  • If the additional certificates fails its QA checks the energy assessor will be suspended and asked to complete further training or any other corrective action.
  • DLUHC requires that every energy assessor must have Public Liability Insurance (PLI) as well as Professional Indemnity Insurance (PII) cover.  Please see the table below for the requirements for each strand.
  • Strand Professional Indemnity  Public Liability 
    DEC £100,000 for each claim £1,000,000 per claim
    EPC3/4 £250,000 for each claim £1,000,000 per claim in relation to EPCs for existing buildings.
    EPC 5 £250,000 for each claim **
    Air Conditioning Inspection L3 £50,000 for each claim £1,000,000 per claim
    Air Conditioning Inspection L4 £500,000 for each claim £1,000,000 per claim
    **Although the SOR does not state a requirement here, I believe that this is an oversight and that the requirement is the same as for the other strands, £1,000,000 per claim.
  • Energy Assessor Schemes are also required to impose additional QA audits for other reasons including, excessive use of helpdesks, complaints from clients, high lodgements or "where a scheme forms a view, for whatever reason, that a particular energy assessor may be at high risk of providing an erroneous certificate, the auditing of an energy assessor's work should be brought forward to the next available certificate, and depending on the level of risk the sampling rate of that persons work should be increased".
  • Energy Assessors can be suspended or removed from the scheme at anytime for failing a QA audit typically for not supplying requested audit information, transgression of the code of conduct, failing to replace an EPC, DEC, Advisory/Recommendation report or ACIR when requested to do so, or as the result of an upheld complaint, in such cases the notice of suspension or removal from a scheme is required to be sent to all other scheme operators and DLUHC.


Quality Assurance of Building Energy Certificates in Scotland

For Non Domestic energy assessments in Scotland, the Scottish Government has issued the Operating Framework of Approved Organisations for companies operating energy assessor schemes like CIBSE Certification who run a register for assessors in Scotland. These requirements are to be implemented by ALL Energy Assessor Schemes with registers covering energy assessments in Scotland to ensure and maintain consistency.

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