Getting a Building Energy Rating for your home

What is a Building Energy Rating?

A Building Energy Rating (BER) evaluates your home based on how energy efficient it is. The scale goes from A to G, with A-rated homes being the most energy efficient and G-rated homes the least.

What are the benefits of a good BER?

The better your BER, the more energy efficient your home is. Homes with a good BER rating will:

  • Stay warm for longer
  • Have lower energy bills
  • Have lower carbon emissions, making them more environmentally friendly

How is your BER calculated?

A BER assesses the amount of energy your home uses for things such as:

  • Heating the hot water
  • Heating the rooms
  • Ventilation
  • Lighting

It does not include the electricity used for running appliances such as cookers, fridges or washing machines.

The BER calculation is based on the building and does not consider the number of people living in the home. This makes it easier for potential buyers or renters to compare homes.

Why do I need a BER certificate?

Your BER certificate will tell you the energy efficiency rating of your home.

All new homes must have a BER certificate.

You also need to have a BER certificate if you are:

  • Selling your home
  • Renting your property

The owner of the home is responsible for getting the BER.

If you are selling or renting your property all advertisements for the property must show the property's BER. The SEAI has more information about these legal requirements.

How long does my BER certificate last?

Your certificate is valid for 10 years unless you:

  • Make structural changes to the house
  • Make changes to your heating system

If you make these changes to your home, or your certificate has expired, you need to get a new BER assessment of your home.

How do I find out my BER?

If you want to find out the BER of your home, you can check online if there is a BER rating.

If there isn't, you can hire an approved BER assessor to survey and assess your home and calculate the BER.

Check online if your home already has a BER

You can check for a valid BER certificate on the SEAI National BER Register. You need one of the following to check the register:

  • The Meter Point Reference Number (MPRN) of the home. You can find this on the top of your electricity bill.
  • An existing BER number. You can find this on the BER certificate and advisory report.

If the property has a BER, the register will show the property's:

  • BER certificate
  • BER advisory report
  • BER expiry date

The SEAI has more information about finding an existing BER.

Get a BER assessment with an SEAI approved surveyor

If your home doesn't already have a BER and you want to get one, you can hire an assessor to do a BER assessment. They will inspect and survey your home using specialist software which measures:

  • The energy performance and carbon dioxide emissions of your home's heating source such as your gas or oil boiler
  • Ventilation
  • Lighting
  • Water heating source

SEAI has a national register of BER assessors to help you find a BER assessor in your area.

What does a BER assessment involve?

The inspection normally takes between 30 minutes and 1 hour depending on the size of your home. As part of the inspection, your assessor completes a survey of each room in the home, including the attic and garage, if you have them. They also take photographs of different areas of your home as part of the assessment.

The type of information they record includes:

  • The year the property was built and when any extensions were added
  • The insulation levels in the walls, roof and floor
  • The type of building (for example, detached, semi-detached)
  • The dimensions of your rooms, windows and doors
  • Details about your baths and showers
  • Details about your water heating system, ventilation system and lighting
  • Details about any renewable energy sources

They will then be able to calculate the annual energy use for heating, lighting and ventilating your home. When the assessment is complete, your assessor will give you a BER certificate and an advisory report.

The BER certificate tells you the BER rating of your home and the advisory report gives you recommendations on how to improve your BER.

How much does a BER assessment cost?

The price of a BER assessment can vary depending on the supplier and the size of your home. The cost for an apartment is around €150, while the cost for a standard house is between €200 and €300.

You should get at least 3 quotes from different assessors before deciding on which one to choose.

See SEAI for the national register of BER assessors. This register lists the BER assessors working in Ireland.

How can I improve my BER?

As part of your BER assessment, you will receive an advisory report. This will give you recommendations on how you can improve energy efficiency in your home.

You can improve your BER by upgrading the insulation in your home and making other changes. You may be able to get a grant to help with these.

For more information on these grants, see our pages on Grants for a home energy upgrade and Individual home energy upgrade grants (Better Energy Homes).

What does BER exempt mean?

Some buildings do not need a BER certificate when they are being sold or rented. These buildings are called BER exempt and include:

  • Stand-alone buildings with floor space of less than 50 square metres
  • Protected structures
  • National monuments
  • Places of worship or buildings used for religious activities
  • Non-residential agricultural buildings
  • Certain temporary buildings
  • Industrial buildings that are not meant for human occupancy and have an installed heat capacity of less than 10W/m2

If your house is a protected structure, such as a Georgian house, it will be BER exempt. However, you can still get a BER assessment if you want one.

Contact SEAI for more information

For more information about Building Energy Ratings, see

SEAI also have a guide to Building Energy Ratings for homeowners (pdf).

You can contact the BER helpdesk by:

  • Email:
  • Phone: 01 808 2054
Page edited: 23 January 2024