Opinion of the president of Association of family tourism
After most Croatian media warned all private accommodation owners that they are obliged to obtain an energy efficiency certificate for their apartments by January 1st, 2016, Slobodna Dalmacija spoke to the president of the Association of family tourism within the Croatian Chamber of Commerce, Neno Pinezić who stated: “There is no legal foundation that obliges object owners, physical persons offering accommodation services in their homes, to obtain an energy efficiency certificate and they do not have to give a copy of it to their guests. We advise all persons that are questioning the terms and regulations of the Construction Act, according to the type of service and registration to consult their legal advisor.
This is definitely good news for more than 63 000 registered private accommodation owners, and considering that the cost of the above mentioned certificate is not negligible, this is one last cost in an already long list of deeds they have to pay every year. Even though the Ministry of Civil Engineering is still adamant that all flats above 50m square that are being rented have to have an energy certificate as of the beginning of next year, Association of family tourism does not share their opinion.
– According to regulations, the purpose of having the energy efficiency certificate is to acquaint the new owner of the object with the energy grade in order to estimate the cost of heating or cooling. These costs are carried over to the new owner. Article 24 of the Construction Act states that the “owner of the building for which the certificate is being issued must, before selling, renting or leasing the object, obtain the certificate and give it to the new owner or present a photocopy to the person renting the object. However, Croatian Hospitality and Catering Industry Act treats the private accommodation owners as physical persons and the Act clearly explains which services are provided by the owner. Apartment leasing or rent is not mentioned anywhere. Therefor, persons providing private accommodation services are a category specially regulated by this Act, they are not renting or leasing the apartment so there is no legal requirement for them to obtain the Energy certificate – Neno Pinezić explained.
When asked to comment why the Ministry is insisting on this certificate if there is no reason for private accommodation owners to have one he stated: “Insisting on “reading” the law this way makes me wonder whether there is a client-interest relationship between licensed certification agencies and the persons who decided include “accommodation service providers” on the list. I wouldn’t be surprised if they have some sort of a deal to split the profits so that is why they are creating havoc and scaring people with huge fines unless they comply and get the certificate”.