• Enrate
  • Blackberry Lane
  • Delgany
  • Co. Wicklow
  • 085-1359151

Fully accredited and
registered with SEAI

BER Assessment for New Build

Please note Enrate will only undertake a provisional BER assessment for a "new build" house if the building designer supplies a fully completed BER Assessment (shared from the Deap 4 computer program) for the planned house which shows compliance with Part L of the Building Regulations. In this situation you will already know what BER rating the house will achieve. If you don't already know what the BER will be, then this service is not suitable for you.
In that case you should revert to the SEAI list of registered assessors here, and choose one who provides a design service.

Effectively this means that the building designer must have a good understanding of building energy rating and the building regulations, but may not necessarily be a registered BER assessor. If the building designer has designed the house to be sure it complies fully with the Building Regulations, then he/she will already have assessed the plans using the Deap 4 computer program, which is the program used in a BER assessment. If there is a heat pump in the design, then the SEAI "heat pump tool" spreadsheet will have been completed. However, the designer may not be registered with SEAI to certify the provisional assessment or to produce the actual Provisional BER Certificate. In this situation the designer can send the completed assessent and  the full specifications to Enrate so we can check over it, and then officially certify it by registering it with SEAI as a Provisional BER Cert.

The Provisonal BER Cert, the Dwelling Details Report and Part L Specification Report (which demonstrates conformance with the Building Regs) will subsequently be e-mailed to you. The local planning authority may require the latter two documents before commencement of the build.
This service is not offered outside the Greater Dublin area, due to the requirement for a site visit before the Final BER is issued.


The cost of this Provisional Cert is the same as for a regular BER assessment as shown on the "Prices" page of this website. This fee is payable at the time of the provisional assessment, ie before the build starts.

After the house is built, a second and final BER assessment will be required reflecting the house "as built". A site visit and survey is always necessary prior to issuing the full or final BER Certificate, which is required by law before first occupancy of the property.
The Enrate BER assessor will visit the site to confirm the floor areas and final specification.

The supervising architect/engineer/developer will be required to sign off on various aspects of the build, including the insulation types and thicknesses, as well as ACD forms describing any areas of thermal bridging. Airtightness test results will also need to be supplied at this stage. The Final BER Cert may, or may not, show the same result as the provisional BER cert, depending on how closely the builder followed the original spec. We will require a full "as built" sign-off  from the supervising architect or engineer with before the Final BER Cert can be issued, and that person must be fully qualified and insured, be a current member of the relevant professional body, and the sign-off document must be stamped with the stamp of that professional body.
The cost of the final BER Cert is again the same as for a regular BER assessment as shown on the "Prices" page of this website. So that is a second fee payable separately after completion of the house.
The final BER cert is required to prove conformity with Part L of the Building Regs, and is also a legal requirement before the dwelling is sold (or first occupied, in the case of a self-build)

 

The Procedure

The spec should give a brief description of the type of construction (eg timber frame) and a detailed list of the insulation types being used. Agrément Certs or other certified datasheets should be supplied for each product used. This would include the brand names/versions/models and thickness of insulation in the floor, wall and roof elements. Also the appropriate certification from the window manufacturer and heating system. Details of these would also have been already entered into the Deap 4 program.
Read the Enrate tips on design; larger investment options and passive houses. Most of these tips can be incorporated into any design.

Next we compare all the data from the plans and the spec with the Deap file supplied by the building designer. The Deap program is the only way to prove compliance with Part L of the 2019 NZEB Building Regulations in relation to the renewable energy requirement and the energy performance of the proposed building. If full compliance is achieved with the proposed specification, a Provisional BER can be issued straight away. However, it should be noted that a lot of design work must go into the proposed building's design and spec to ensure compliance with Part L. The cost of the BER assessment does not cover this design work.
NZEB; The main requirements of the current 2019 NZEB regulations are as follows (figures in brackets refer to the previous 2011 regs);
Floors and Walls U-Value maximum of 0.18 (was 0.21)
Roof U-Value maximum of 0.16 (unchanged)
Windows and Doors U-Value maximum of 1.4 (was 1.6)
Air Permeability backstop of 5 m³/hr/m² (was 7)   This relates to the airtightness of the building.
EPC maxinmum of 0.30 (was 0.4)  This relates to the energy performance or energy efficiency of the building.
CPC maximum of 0.35 (was 0.4)   This relates to the C02 emissions or carbon footprint of the building.
RER minimim of 20% This relates to the % of renewable energy used by the building.

The overall EPC requirement is usually the most difficult to achieve, therefore it is likely that in order to achieve the 0.30 EPC shown above, U-Values much better than those shown would be needed. It is up to the building designer to make the decisions as to what kind of insulation and what kind of heating system go into the design in order to achieve compliance.
If the design as supplied conforms with the requirements, then confirmation will be given by us that it passes Part L of the 2019 NZEB Building regulations, and a Provisional BER Certificate can be issued. Two energy advisory reports will also be issued; the Dwelling Details Report and the Part L Specification.These contain technical details from the Provisional Deap BER assessment, and may be required by the local planning authority before commencement.

If the client wants the completed building to achieve a particular BER rating, say an A1 or A2 rating, then it is up to the building designer to produce suitable plans and a spec to achieve that. It is unlikely that anything less than that will pass the current Building Regulations.

The overall shape and design of the structure is always an important factor. Ideally from a BER or energy conservation point of view, the house should minimise surface area as a ratio to to floor area. So ideally it would be a large standalone building, or a smaller one in a terrace or apartment block, all having a relatively compact "boxy" shape. All the glazing would be south facing. But obviously for reasons of aesthetics and individual site location, there is always a compromise between "form and function". The energy efficiency of a design which does not initially pass Part L can be improved by the extra use of renewable energy sources within the house, for example by adding an array of photovoltaic solar panels to the roof and connecting them to the electricity grid.

On completion of the dwelling the Assigned Certifier of the building project must furnish the following to Enrate;
1. A signed declaration detailing the full and final spec "as built". Any changes to insulation brand names, types and thicknesses as compared to the provisional spec and any changes made to the original plans should be highlighted.
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2. Certified airtightness test results, from a blower door test done after completion of the house. Tester to be registered with NSAI.

3.Signed copies of the ACD's. The Acceptable Construction Details are checklists relating to technical aspects of the build, and are available for download from the Dept. of Environment website.

4. A second fee, being the fee for the Final BER Cert.

A BER site survey is then undertaken by the BER Assessor. Documentation relating to certain delivered materials (eg windows or any unusual insulation or solar panels) if not already supplied, may also be required to get the best result in the BER assessment.

Remember, small improvements in energy efficiency can result in large savings to the householder over time.

Prices for new build;

The initial fee for the Provisional BER Cert will be the same as the fee for the BER of an equivalent sized "existing" building. Please select it from the table here or from the price calculator if the proposed house is larger than 275 square metres.

The Final BER Cert will cost the same fee again.



Self-Builders

There is provision in certain situations for self builders to be exempt from the requirement to have "assigned certifiers" supervising the build.
In such situations the law says the owner is obliged to have a final BER Cert before first occcupancy of the house.
A copy of a particular rating of BER Cert may also be required by the planning authority before returning a planning deposit given to them at the planning permission stage.
In such situations we can supply a final BER Cert after the build is completed, for a flat rate fee of €300. However it is likely that the BER will not be as good as one for a house designed with a good result in mind, and with everything fully "signed-off" on. The house may not get an A rating. This means that the BER may show non-conformance with Part L of the Building Regulations, and therefore the building does not fully comply with the regs. That in turn may have a negative impact when trying to draw down the final installment of a loan, or in complying with planning permission conditions.
But if the owner occupier is happy with the standard of their house, and is not worried that the BER Cert shows a technical non-compliance with the Building Regs, then we can go ahead and issue a BER Cert, while informing the client of the non-compliance. 

 

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About Us

Enrate was founded in 2009 by Clive Dalby to provide an energy rating service for residential dwellings. With over 20 years experience in construction and a particular interest in the emerging renewable "green" technologies, Clive is well placed to advise on how best to make the cost effective improvements to your property which will save you money. Sales and marketing are handled by Eithne Dalby. Enrate is fully accredited and registered with SEI, and a member of the BER Assessors Association of Ireland.

We are committed to providing a quality impartial service which will address the individual requirements of each client.

The Enrate promise; Your time is valuable; we will always get there for an appointment.

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Accessiblity

This site has been audited to meet WCAG Priority 1 Accessiblity Standard. It is written in "Plain English". It is designed for maximum ease of navigation.

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Privacy Policy

Any information submitted by you will not be shared with any third party, except for data collected pertaining to a completed BER assessment which will become the property of Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI) which is the issuing authority for BER Certificates. The BER result or grade only (being represented by a letter on a scale of A - G) which appears on the BER Certificate and the advisory report will be published on the SEI National Database and will be accessible to the public on the SEI website.