From the 1st January 2009 a Building Energy Rating (BER) assessment is required for the sale or letting of an existing building. Protected Structures, proposed Protected Structures, buildings protected under the National Monuments Acts, and buildings used as places of worship are exempt from the requirements of these regulations.
A BER assessment is an assessment of the energy performance of a particular building. It does not bring about any requirement for works to be carried out to an existing building. However, even where a building is exempt from the need for a BER assessment, some owners may nonetheless wish to up-grade the energy efficiency of their property. While this is welcome, interventions that may be appropriate to a building of modern construction methods and material could have unintended harmful consequences for historic and traditional buildings, and the health of their occupants by promoting condensation and subsequent mould growth. Where owners of historic buildings are considering changes to improve the efficiency of their properties they should consult first with Fingal County Council’s Conservation Officer and planning permission may be required for certain inventions to Protected Structures.
The Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government published guidance on "Energy Efficiency in Traditional Buildings" in Nov 2010 as part of its Advice Series of booklets to guide repairs and maintance of historic buildings. This document is available for purchase from Government Pulblications Office, Molesworth Street, Dublin 2 and can be downloaded as a pdf below.
There are also a number of UK publications and websites on this topic.