SAP FAQs: Your Main Questions about the Standard Assessment Procedure Answered

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SAP assessments have become a requirement for new-builds in the UK. They can also be a requirement for building extensions and add-ons. For a building or structure to be rented out or sold, it has to have undergone SAP assessment – and passed. SAP, which stands for Standard Assessment Procedure, can be carried out by a special assessor, and it takes into consideration a building or structure’s energy efficiency and performance and how various means are used to improve its efficiency and therefore lessen its environmental impact.

As a government initiative, it has a lot of benefits, not just for the environment, but for the cost of running a building as well. When you know your SAP assessment for your property, you can find ways to lessen its operating or running expenses based on the evaluation, and your building can operate in a much more environmentally-friendly, effective manner. But if you have particular questions about the SAP, here are some SAP FAQs: your main questions answered.

What is it?

The SAP incorporates a series of reports that show or indicate the energy efficiency of a building.

Does my building need an assessment?

New dwellings, particularly residential ones, are required to go through the SAP assessment, and this requirement has been in place since 2012. 

Is the SAP assessment the same as the EPC? 

The Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is required by law before you can rent, sell or buy any UK property. A typical SAP assessment already includes the EPC (hence the combined term SAP EPCs) but the EPC will not include the SAP assessment, so SAP assessments are more thorough and complete. The SAP assessment provides more detailed information compared to the EPC.

What do the calculations of SAP mean?

The SAP calculations are shown as numbers, and these numbers reflect the energy expenses and costs associated with running a piece of property. If you get a score that is near zero, then this means your property has the highest expenses in terms of energy, but if you get a score of 100, then your property has zero costs or expenses related to energy. Some buildings can even have a rating higher than 100, which means that the building can produce more energy than it requires, and this extra energy can then be exported back to the grid for potential earnings.

What does the assessment consider?

The assessment considers a number of factors and elements, which include the building’s structure as well as a fabric (its insulation, etc.), the building’s heating and hot water systems, its lighting system, and if it generates any renewable energy using wind turbines, solar panels, etc.

What do I need to provide for the assessment?

Every SAP assessment will require the following: your complete address, including your postcode, your floor plans, elevation, and sectional drawings. It may also require supporting documents such as information on lighting and construction, windows, doors, roof lights, ventilation, the heating, and cooling systems, the hot water system, and any system using renewable energy.