What is a SAP and when is it needed?

SAP, ‘Standard Assessment Procedure’, is an assessment used to gauge how energy efficient a domestic dwelling is. The energy efficiency of a dwelling is based on the various energy costs associated with the dwelling including the space/water heating system used, the ventilation system installed and the types of lighting used etc. A SAP assessment is a lawful requirement and should therefore be obtained by anyone considering undergoing construction to a domestic property.

A SAP assessment is divided into 2 parts, L1A and L1B. SAP L1A applies to new builds prior to the commencement of construction, where as L1B applies to existing houses undergoing extensions. The SAP assessment provides a set of building standards to which the new dwelling/extension should be built to in order to ensure it complies with building regulations in terms of energy efficiency. A SAP assessment is therefore required for all new builds and extensions, and should be gained prior to the commencement of the build.

What is an SBEM and when is it needed?

SBEM, ‘Simplified Building Energy Model’, refers to the computer programme used to assess how energy efficient a commercial property is based on the buildings energy usage and carbon dioxide emissions from month to month. The energy efficiency of a commercial property is based on various aspects of the building including how the building is to be/has been built, the heating ventilation, air conditioning systems and lighting equipment installed as well as its use. An SBEM assessment is a lawful requirement and should therefore be obtained by anyone considering undergoing construction to a commercial property.

An SBEM assessment is divided into 2 parts, L2A and L2B. SBEM L2A applies to new commercial buildings prior to commencement of construction, where as SBEM L2B applies to existing commercial buildings undergoing extensions/alterations. The SBEM assessment provides a set of building standards to which the new building/extension should be built to in order to ensure it complies with building regulations in terms of its energy efficiency. An SBEM assessment is therefore required for all new commercial buildings and extensions, such as offices, public houses and storage units etc, and should be gained prior to the commencement of the build. 

What is an EPC and when is it required?

An EPC, or energy performance certificate, provides information on the energy efficiency of both domestic and commercial properties. The energy efficiency of a building is based on a scale of A-G, the closer a building is to a rating of A the better the buildings energy efficiency. All homes and commercial properties being bought, sold or rented require an EPC. As long as the building in question has a roof, walls and uses energy to condition an indoor climate an EPC is an essential and legal requirement. The EPC report is supplied alongside a recommendations report which states various ways in which to reduce energy use and carbon dioxide emissions and therefore increase the overall energy efficiency of the building/dwelling.