Thermal sieves: the DPE evolves for surfaces of less than 40 m2

The method of calculating the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is set to undergo changes for properties smaller than 40 square meters. An order dated March 25, 2024, indeed adjusts the thresholds of the EPC labels applicable to these properties. This measure, scheduled to take effect on July 1, 2024, aims to make these different thresholds fairer and to remove a certain number of small properties from the category of "energy sieves."

What is the EPC ?

The Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is a tool used to estimate the energy consumption of a dwelling or building and assess its ecological impact in terms of greenhouse gas emissions. It must be provided during sales and rentals in mainland France, except for exceptions defined in the Building and Housing Code. It is carried out at the initiative of the owner or landlord and is at their expense.

The EPC displays a label on the property, ranging from A (extremely energy efficient) to G (extremely inefficient, also referred to as an "energy sieve"). The letter integrates two criteria :

Energy consumption;

Quantity of greenhouse gas emissions.

New thresholds for areas less than 40 square meters

The order published on April 20, 2024, adjusts the thresholds of the labels for dwellings with less than 40 square meters of reference surface area, as well as the designation of the surface area used in the EPC. It also updates the annual energy rates for carrying out EPCs in mainland France. The text amends the order of March 31, 2021, and will come into force on July 1, 2024.

It specifies that the surface area taken into account is "the reference surface area of the building. This area is the habitable surface area of the building, to which the surface areas of heated conservatories and the surface areas of heated rooms for the main use of human occupancy, with a ceiling height of at least 1.80 meters, are added."

EPCs that have been carried out between July 1, 2021, and July 1, 2024, on dwellings with a reference surface area of 40 square meters or less may be the subject of a document attesting to the new EPC label. In the absence of a new certificate, the originally produced EPC will remain valid.

This measure, which concerns particularly small properties, aims to remove a certain number of dwellings from the category of "energy sieves" (categories F and G of the EPC) and to lift the prohibition on renting these properties to allow time for owners to consider their renovation. 140,000 properties are affected.

You already have an EPC for a property less than 40 square meters

The Agency for Ecological Transition (Ademe) offers you the opportunity to obtain a simulation of your new label now. Simply enter the 13-character number listed on your EPC into the simulator.

Energy Audit

Since April 1, 2023, an energy audit must be carried out in the event of the sale of a property for residential use, an individual dwelling, or a residential building in single ownership belonging to energy classes F or G. This document complements the EPC but does not replace it. The energy audit is a more in-depth version of the EPC.

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