The energy certificate is mandatory for those who advertise a house for sale or rental (in Mainland Portugal), and fines for non-compliance are high. New rules are coming, find out which ones.

The energy certificate is a mandatory requirement, since 2013, for those who place a house on the market for sale or lease, whether the owner or a real estate agent. Any advertisement published should indicate the energy rating of the building, which serves to inform potential buyers or tenants about energy efficiency and expected energy consumption.

There are several factors that determine the energy class of a house:

  • Location;
  • Year of construction;
  • Typology, floor and area;
  • Materials used in walls, floors, roofs and glass
  • Existence of air conditioning equipment
  • Production of hot sanitary water

The document is issued by technicians authorized by the Energy Agency (ADENE) and attests to the energy efficiency of a property, on a scale that ranges from A+ (very efficient) to F (inefficient). It is valid for 10 years for residential buildings and must be presented at the time of the conclusion of the purchase/sale, lease or leasing contract.

There are new rules for both housing and service buildings - transposed by European directives - which introduce periodic inspections of equipment such as air conditioning systems. In general, all new buildings or the target of major renovations, "must have almost zero energy needs". Energy efficiency is one of the European concerns, and in Portugal it is intended to improve the class of certified buildings, which has been moving slowly from C or D to A or B.

How to apply for the energy certificate?

If you need to have an energy certificate, you should look for a company that is qualified to do so. Whether it's a construction company, an energy supplier or even an appliance store, the important thing is that you are accredited by the Energy Agency ADENE to provide these services.

It's easy to find companies or energy certification services all over the country. But if you have difficulty finding what you are looking for in your area, or want to make sure you use a company properly qualified by ADENE, contact a real estate professional who will help you.

How much is the certificate?

It depends on the typology of the property, the location and the expert, since the price of the service is not tabled. There may be differences of tens of euros between companies or professionals. However, there is an ADENE table for certificate registration and issuance fees, so that amount already knows you have to pay.

Housing (values without VAT):

  • T0/T1 - 28 euros
  • T2/T3 - 40,5 euros
  • T4/T5 - 55 euros
  • T6 or higher - 65 euros

Trade and services (vat-free values):

  • Up to 250 m2 - 135 euros
  • 250 m2 to 500 m2 - 350 euros
  • 500 m2 to 5,000 m2 - 750 euros
  • More than 5,000 m2 - 950 euros

Is it a time-consuming process?

No. Normally, in about 2 to 3 days you will have the energy certificate. There are even companies that enable urgent emissions overnight.

What documents do I have to gather to apply for the energy certificate?

To request the issuance of the certificate you need a copy of the property plan, the housing data sheet, the registration certificate at the registry office and the urban building booklet, in addition to all the owner's data.

What can happen if I do not have the energy certificate?

The certificate is mandatory in most residential buildings or services and should always be included in an advertisement, so non-compliance may give rise to a fine. The fine values for individuals range from EUR 250 to EUR 3,741. For companies the fine can go from 2,500 to 44,890 euros.

If you want to sell your property, either privately or through an agency,don't forget the importance of certification.

In what situations is certification not mandatory?

Most exceptions to energy certification are related to primary commercial activities or housing spaces with very small area, but there are several specific situations or sectors that are not required to certify:

  • Non-residential industrial, livestock or agricultural facilities with reduced energy needs;
  • Places of worship or intended for religious activity;
  • Non-air-conditioned parking buildings or workshops/warehouses with little human presence (less than two hours per day);
  • Housing houses with an area up to 50m2;
  • Commercial buildings and return services, until their sale or lease;
  • Buildings in ruins;
  • Military infrastructure and buildings or security forces that are subject to confidentiality rules;
  • Sale or damage to owners, renters, expropriating entities, or for total confirmed demolition;
  • Lease for less than 4 months or to those who are already a tenant;
  • Donation and inheritance contracts, which do not involve transactions;
  • sale of fractions or buildings in insolvency proceedings;
  • Trespassing contracts that do not involve changing physical space.

In 2020, according to ADENE data, the representation of energy categories has already placed class B as the third most representative and A relatively close:

  • A+: 3.1%
  • A: 14.9%
  • B: 15.7%
  • B-: 10.2%
  • C: 20.9%
  • D: 17.7%
  • E: 11%
  • F: 6.5%