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29 June 2018 / news

Mandatory energy label C for offices as from 2023: be sure to keep it in mind!

The government's sustainability plans for real estate are taking more concrete forms: it is expected that as from 2023 all office buildings will need to have an energy label C or higher.

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It is also expected that all offices must, on average, have energy label A in 2030.

Is the C label obligation already relevant now? Definitely, it would be wise to take it into account when constructing, purchasing and leasing office buildings. After all, for an office building that is currently being constructed, purchased or leased with labels D to G, it is expected that (energy-saving) measures will have to be taken within less than five years in order for the building to comply with all requirements in 2023. The costs that this involves may turn out to be significant. This (cost) aspect will play a role in the negotiations and the contract documents as regards the construction, purchase and lease of office buildings.

Exceptions to the C label obligation

Does the C label obligation apply to all office buildings? No, there will also be a number of situations in which the C label obligation does not need to be complied with. These exceptions are:

  • office buildings with an office function of less than 50%;
  • office buildings with a total surface area of 100m2 or less;
  • nationally listed buildings;
  • an office building that will not exist for more than 2 years; and
  • in case the costs of the measures that must be taken to comply with the obligation have a repayment period of 10 years or longer.

Background and penalties

Minister Ollongren sent the Upper and Lower House a draft decree in which the change to the Buildings Decree 2012 with respect to the label obligation for office buildings is included. The draft decree states that from 1 January 2023 onwards, office buildings must have an energy index of 1.3 or better (the energy index (EI) features a detailed manner of calculating the energy consumption of a building). An EI of 1.3 is currently equal to label category C. The sanction for non-compliance with the C label obligation is that the office may no longer be used. The municipalities will monitor the compliance. The commencement date included in the draft decree is 1 October 2018.

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