DPE Report Advice Please

Hi, wonder if anyone can help us out. We have just had a DPE report done with a view to selling our property. Our house is heated by a wood burning stove with a back boiler which heats all the radiators throughout the property. The guy asked for invoices for our wood for the last 3 years - when we explained we didn't have invoices other than for the last year (the wood was previously bought for cash from neighbours) he initially said an email from us confirming how many cordes of wood we used a year would suffice but then later said he would have to go with "worst case scenario" for his calculations.

Now we're under no illusions as to the efficiency of our house - it is an old stone property yet it does have double glazing, insulation and the afore mentioned (very efficient) heating system - and had expected it to be in the lower quadrant of the energy chart but we were shocked to be given such a bad energy rating.

Apparently this is a new requirement - to have actual proof of how much wood you buy? Does anyone know of anyone producing these reports in the Bourganeuf/Eymoutiers/St Leonard environs who is still happy to go on the property owner's statement or are they all now working to this "worst case scenario"?

Don't really follow the logic of this as proof of how much wood you buy isn't really proof of how much wood you actually burn, is it (especially with the French propensity for stock piling)...

Any advice would be gratefully received!

The "Expert" could have used the standard "model" for your property in the absence of actual factures over the previous 3 years which takes account of the size of property and the construction (insulation/wall thickness/ single or double glazed etc).

For a holiday property using the last 3 years bills would have produced a totally unrealistic figure so it sounds as though the "expert" has his head where the sun never shines! If you are selling through an agent insist you are unhappy with the result and insist on a new DPE from another agency at their cost.

Most older houses with double glazing and using wood as heating fuel should score at least a "D" - but as mentioned by others the DPE is there to satisfy the "Green" lobby and a low rating is unlikely to discourage a prospective purchaser.


What if the previous owners were never there so used very little energy or were the type who preferred it nice and cold? We have some friends like that and we always have to wrap up warm in their house - it's awful.

Our rating is 111.59 so extremely good. The tenants always joke that when we light our fire, they turn all their heating off and open the windows.

Thanks Christine. I think that Jane is correct but I am fully aware of the pitfalls. they will no doubt be offering spectacular discounts if one signs on the spot. I have already told them I NEVER sign anything on the spot and that as it's a building related matter I have over 40 years experience in the field as an architect that did simply hundreds of house refurbishment projects. As I recommend to clients I always get competitive quotations on any proposed works.

EDF have sold their client list to them and they then call themselves partner companies!

Hi David

I don't recall EDF as having "Partner companies". If they phoned you to get an appointment, there are not likely to be EDF approved. Unless YOU contacted them... Anyway, just beware....

Best regards

sounds about right, Tessa. We had 22cm of laine de verre in the grenier, double glazing etc and were F on our last place.

C is a good rating, Tracy, most modern places only get that. It'll take the new BBC regs to push most new builds into the B or A category ;-)

I'd ask someone else to come out,find a friendly face and see if it comes out better......?

All these reports as in England have provided a super income for lots of people who probably wouldn't get jobs otherwise. Interestingly I have an EDF "Partner Company" coming tomorrow to look at our house with a view to recommending ways of saving money. However as I am nearly 68 I very much doubt that any money I further invest would be amortised over my remaining life time. We live in a 200m2 Breton house buit 1860 with massive granite walls and plenty of interior and characterful wood panelling. I have upgraded all the windows to DG with argon infill and insulated all bedroom ceilings. It's impossible to do major upgrades without a complete interior refit and that would mean new electrics to replace the 10 year old rewire as well. One would have to take cornices off walls, reline all existing walls including tiling, removing wood panelling and ending up with an interior looking like an "affordable" flat in some modern development. We spend about 3500 euros a year on electric light and power including heating and about 400 euros on wood for wood burners as well. We just don't heat the whole of the house in the winter and wear more clothes. I bet he comes up with an awful report and recommends spending a minimum of 10000 euros which I can't afford out of capital. They tried to get me to sign up to 20k euros of solar panels until they accepted what I told them that Les Architectes de France would not allow them anyway as we are in a national park. I do accept that with new buildings you have to aim for the very best but often it's cheaper to know down a building and rebuild it than trying to get an old building up to the very best standards.


As it is your report, commissioned and paid for by you, you are at liberty to go back to the company and ask for justification of the report.

That said, look in any Immobilier window and you will be lucky to see a C rating. And no-one taes any notice until they become a buyer and then ask for a reduction in the sale price . . . .

We have acres of oak woodland and we do our own ,so we would have the same problem. Another french money making scam keeping people in jobs.

I'm afraid it is a new rule brought in from January which states that DPE will be calculated principally by the bills supplied by the owner for the last 3 years.
If the infomation is not supplied, a zero rating is achieved
It simply undermines further what is already a daft European requirement which no one ever takes notice of when buying a house anyway!

It has to be taken in perspective. We renovated an apartment to an extremely high standard which has a C rating, when I expressed dismay to the lady who did the rating she said it would only be higher if it had a condenser boiler and that would push it into B. A was reserved for totally energy efficient houses with solar panels and so on, C she explained was exceptionally high for rental property, mostly they were F and G. So I wouldn't worry about it either - although I pay a lot of attention to ratings! We live in the downstairs of our rental house and our heating bills are considerably higher.

Tessa, we have a receipt showing that we had an earth fitted as part of our complete rewire on our house - the diagnostic guy put it down as a 'point for rectification' because he couldn't see the earth when he looked in our garage. Agent told us not to worry and just to bring the receipt to the Notaires office. It annoyed me though as everything else was good. It's as though they have to say something to justify the ridiculous amount you pay for the reports!

G...with 1222kWh...! We were fully expecting lower end yet nothing quite so extreme. We burn around 4 cordes of wood a year yet he estimated our consumption at €5500 which would be some 30 cordes which not even I could get through (and I like the house toasty warm!)!

Estate agent too said no one takes any notice of the DPE and that he would explain should anyone pick up on it. It's annoying though to have such blatantly incorrect information on the report.

don't worry, no-one takes any notice of the dpe and even modern houses are often c or d rated so lower end for old stone ones is usual. What rating were you given?