We are often asked about responsibility for obtaining an Air Conditioning Energy Inspection (ACEI). Is it up to the landlord to get the assessment and hold the report or is it the tenant? As with most aspects of non-domestic leases it often depends upon the terms of the lease as responsibility could lie with either.
The Energy Performance of Buildings (England and Wales) Regulations 2012 require the person who controls the operation of an air conditioning system to:
- ensure an inspection has been done in accordance with the requirements and timetable of the regulations;
- keep the most recent inspection report provided by an energy assessor; and
- give any inspection report to any person taking over responsibilities with respect to the control of the air conditioning system.
If the control of an air conditioning system is passed to another person and that person has not been given an inspection report by the previous operator of the system, the system must be inspected within three months of the new operator of the system taking over such control. This was originally relevant as initially there was no requirement to lodge certificates and reports onto the National Register. However, this has now changed. It is now required that all certificates and reports must be lodged on to the National Register in England and Wales. These requirements have now been in effect for long enough that any report not lodged on the National Register will no have expired anyway. As a result, valid reports can be found online at https://www.ndepcregister.com/ where they can currently be downloaded for free.
Please Note: The person who controls the operation of the system is the person who controls the technical functioning of the system, not someone who does no more than adjust the temperature or whose only responsibility is to adjust the controls. This will usually be the owner of the system even where day to day operation is contracted out to another person or organisation. However, where a tenant takes total responsibility for a building and its services (e.g. full repairing and insuring lease), then the tenant will control the system and have these responsibilities.
Further information is available in the Department for Communities and Local Government publication Improving the energy efficiency of our buildings – A guide to air conditioning inspections for buildings (December 2012, ISBN: 978-1-4098-3725-1).