What is a BER?

BER, or Building Energy Rating, is an objective scale to rate the energy performance of a building. A building can be rated anywhere from A1 to G, from most to least energy efficient. The scale itself is somewhat similar to that used on household electrical appliances such as fridges.

A Building Energy Rating, or BER, is an energy label that indicates the energy performance of your home.

Why do I need BER certification?

If you wish to sell or lease a new home from 1st July 2008, you are required to provide a BER certificate. If you are buying or renting a new home, you may be entitled to a BER – be sure to ask the seller or landlord for it. Knowing your BER will give you an indication on how energy efficient the building is. With the rising cost of fuel, this knowledge is invaluable.

Who can provide me with a BER certificate?

BER certification must be carried out by a specially trained BER advisor. Dermot Gormanly is fully trained and registered with Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland. He can provide you with certification and advise on measures you can take to improve your building.



Preparing for your BER Assessment, a Homeowner’s Checklist

Before your BER Assessor visits your home, you will need to prepare for your BER assessment. This includes gathering documentary evidence for works done on your home, to ensure you are receiving the most accurate BER rating.

In the absence of relevant documents, your BER Assessor will be required to use ‘default values’, which are conservative estimates of the performance of certain aspects of your home. This may result in your home receiving a lower BER rating.

Our checklist will help you prepare for your BER assessment and ensure you have all the required documents.

What should I expect when a BER Assessor calls to my home?

Your BER is calculated based on the amount of energy your home requires for space heating, hot water heating, ventilation and lighting. In order to complete this calculation, your BER Assessor will need to collect information on various aspects of your home.

To collect this information, your BER Assessor will need access to all areas of your home including the attic, lighting systems, ventilation, meter cupboards, heating systems and controls, hot press and all doors and windows.

During the BER assessment, the information collected by your Assessor will include a number of calculations, measurements and photographic evidence.

How long does a BER assessment take?

This will depend on the complexity and size of your home. Typically, it takes an hour to complete an assessment on an average sized 3-bed semi-detached house.

Your BER Assessor will then enter all the information collected into a software tool called DEAP, which is used to calculate and generate your BER. Your assessor will be able to advise on the time required to complete both the survey and calculations of your home.

What do I receive when my BER assessment is complete?

Once your BER assessment is complete, you will receive your BER Certificate and Advisory Report. The BER Certificate will indicate the BER rating of your home, and the Advisory Report will provide recommendations for home improvements that could increase the energy efficiency of the building and improve your BER rating. Your BER Assessor will indicate to you when you will receive these documents.

Having all your documents and paperwork prepared prior to your assessment will significantly reduce the time it takes to receive your BER Certificate and Advisory Report.

Prepare the relevant paperwork for your BER assessment

  1. Your MPRN number – found on a recent electricity bill, and your Eircode
  2. Details of previous BER assessments (if applicable)
  3. Proof of the year the house was built, any drawings, plans or specifications of the house, and the age of any extensions added to the house (if applicable). e.g. legal documents indicating the age of the dwelling
  4. Details of any upgrade works done to the house (if applicable) including any documentation, certifications, receipts, invoices and/or specifications documents from the architect, engineer or contractor who managed the works, that clearly indicate the address of the dwelling, the works carried out, and the products used. (e.g. for wall insulation this would include the wall area covered, the insulation type/product, and the thickness of insulation used)
  5. Information on the make and model of your boiler and/or other heat sources. (e.g. you should be able to find this information on the side of your boiler)
  6. Certification information for windows and doors. (e.g. for windows, certification information should include the made, model, glazing, u-value and solar transmittance values)
  7. Results of any air tightness tests completed

If you’re having works done on your home, it’s important to request documentation from your contractor once works are complete. Please maintain and keep a record for any future BER assessments on your home.

Prepare your home for your BER assessment

Ensuring your BER Assessor has safe and clear access to all areas of your home is essential for the completion of an accurate BER assessment.