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Energy Performance Certificates for buildings – twelve months of new regulations

by Aleksandra Oleszyńska & Iga Piotrowska

On 28 April 2024, we marked the one-year anniversary of the latest amended provisions of the Law of 29 August 2014 regarding the energy performance of buildings, regulating new rules for energy performance certificates. 

This amendment requires energy performance certificates to be prepared and provided for the sale and lease of a building or part thereof at the conclusion of a sales or lease contract. For users of buildings, the main purpose of these certificates is to provide information on annual energy requirements, helping to determine the operational costs of the building. However, the amended regulations have raised numerous interpretative doubts, especially regarding service and commercial spaces.

Firstly, current regulations require owners of facilities over 500 sqm, where “services to the public” are provided, to display a copy of the energy performance certificate in a visible place. However, without a unambiguous definition of “services to the public,” it is unclear which facilities are subject to this requirement.

Secondly, preparing a certificate for a leased part of a building can be challenging. Legally, a leased object might be considered a set of rooms intended for separate use within a partially open area. Often, at the time of the conclusion of the lease agreement, these premises or parts of the building being a subject of the lease, are not yet separated to their final square footage. Consequently, it is difficult to determine the final energy demand for these areas. In such cases, landlords usually attach a certificate for the entire commercial or office building to the lease agreement. This issue clearly requires more detailed regulations.

The Polish Council of Shopping Centres (Polska Rada Centrów Handlowych) has submitted a request for clarification to the Act on Energy Performance of Buildings to address these practical doubts. The proposed amendments cover issues related to issuing energy performance certificates for specific types of commercial and service premises, displaying these certificates, and meeting the deadlines for inspecting the technical condition of heating and air-conditioning equipment.

18 June 2024