The energy performance diagnosis

DPE: mandatory survey in France

The Energy Performance Diagnosis (commonly called “DPE”), is a mandatory survey in France, that provides information on the energy performance of a dwelling or building by assessing its energy consumption and its impact in terms of greenhouse gas emissions. Also the survey include tests on asbestos, lead, termites, septic tank, radon gas, natural risks such as flooding.

It is part of the energy policy defined at European level to reduce the energy consumption of buildings and limit greenhouse gas emissions.

Since September 1st, 2006 an energy performance diagnosis must be drawn up on the occasion of the sale of any enclosed or covered building or part of a building (with exceptions: see decree no. 2006-1147), whatever its use (residential or non-residential): detached house, housing located in a building, entire residential building, local or tertiary building (office, trade ...), sports or cultural building ...

The DPE must be annexed to the preliminary contract (promise of sale, sale agreement) or, failing that, to the authentic deed of sale. It is established at the expense of the seller, who must keep it available to any prospective purchaser as soon as the property is put up for sale.

Regulated content and modalities

The content and modalities for establishing the DPE are regulated. The DPE describes the building or housing (surface, orientation, walls, windows, materials, etc.), as well as its heating, domestic hot water, cooling and ventilation equipment. It indicates, according to the case, either the quantity of energy actually consumed (on the basis of invoices), or the energy consumption estimated for a standardized use of the building or housing.

The “DPE” must be established by an independent professional who meets the criteria of competence and has taken out an insurance. Certification bodies accredited by the French Accreditation Committee (COFRAC) verify the competencies of the candidates. This certification is mandatory since November 1st, 2007. Some 8000 professionals have already been certified for the realization of the DPE.

The DPE must be presented when selling or renting housing and commercial buildings (offices, hotel, etc.). It aims at informing the owner and the tenant of the energy consumption of the housing or the tertiary building on its heating, its cooling, its production of domestic hot water (ECS), but not on the other uses (lighting, electrical appliances, ventilation, etc.).

  • This document must be presented by the home owner to the home buyer at the first signature.
  • Find a certified expert here.
  • Except in special cases, a DPE is valid for 10 years.

Regulatory Environmental Labels

    The reading of the DPE is facilitated by two labels with 7 classes from A to G (A corresponding to the best performance, G to the worst):
  • the energy label to know the primary energy consumption;
  • the climate label to know the amount of greenhouse gases emitted.
  • This device is part of a set of measures that both limit the impact of rising energy costs on the French purse and also preserve the environment.
  • This energy label is a great progress in the information of the users: it allows in particular every French household which buys or rents a property to better measure the impact on the greenhouse effect of its choices of energy and to have an evaluation of its energy bill.