Since April 2018, changes to the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards meant that rental properties must achieve a minimum EPC rating of E before being able to be let to a new person/s. Therefore, owners of the least energy efficient homes (rated F or G) have been required to make changes to upgrade their rating to E or above before agreeing new tenancies.
The costs of upgrading a rental property to an E rating
6 per cent of the current domestic rental market does not meet the necessary standards, that’s around 290,000 properties owned by 200,000 landlords in England and Wales. The cost of upgrading those properties with a lower EPC rating than E is estimated to be an average of £1,200 and would save tenants around £180 a year, according to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.
However, for some properties, the costs are much higher with more work needing to be done on the property to meet the energy efficiency standards. The government had previously made landlords who faced costs of above £2,500 for adding energy efficient measures exempt from meeting the standards.
This exemption had been questioned by campaigners and on Monday 5th November, ministers announced that the cap will be increased to £3,500. The change means that fewer landlords will be exempt and more tenants will benefit from warmer, well-insulated housing. The rules are to be tightened from the start of 2019.
Upgrading to an E rating
There is much incentive for landlords to make improvements to their energy efficiency rating. Not only does a rating of E or above allow them to legally let the property, but it also lowers energy bills, reduces carbon emissions and adds value to the property.
Failure to comply with the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards regulation could lead to landlords being fined up to £5,000 by local authorities.
The recommended amendments to upgrade to an E rating will vary from property to property but perhaps the most common are:
- Upgrading to low-energy light bulbs.
- Insulating the loft (an uninsulated property loses up to 25% of its heat through the roof).
- Upgrading to a newer boiler.
EPC assessments in Market Harborough
If you are a landlord needing an EPC assessment for your properties, Naylors Estate Agents are here to help. Our team are fully accredited EPC assessors and we usually undertake the process when selling or assessing a property for rental.