As of 1st April 2018, landlords of privately rented domestic and non-domestic properties in England and Wales will be unable to let any properties which do not have an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) rating of E or better.
It is estimated that over 400,000 properties currently fail to meet these new energy performance standards.
According to research conducted by energy company EON, one in four landlords don’t know the energy rating of their properties – now is the time to make sure you do. It’s also important to remember that what was once classed an E rating may now have dropped down to an F or a G so if your EPC is due to expire this year, it’s worth booking in a new test.
ARLA (Association of Residential Letting Agents) Propertymark Chief Executive David Cox said; “Landlords have been responding to tenants’ demands for better quality and better insulated homes over the last few years; the number of properties which are EPC rated F or G has fallen from around 700,000 in 2012, to 300,000 today. However, there are still a lot which don’t meet the standards.
“After the deadline passes at the end of this month, landlords face fines of up to £4,000 for flouting the law or losing money on empty properties which can’t be let until they meet the standards. This will also have implications on the wider rental market, which is in the midst of a serious supply crisis…"
Richard Bradley, Agency Manager at Newcastle-based property management agency Walton Robinson, advises;
“The first step for any landlord who is unsure on a property’s EPC rating is to check the online register on the government website (epcregister.com) and download a copy of the certificate.
If it isn’t there, it means that the property doesn’t have one and you will need to instruct a new test. Within an EPC you’ll find guidance on recommended measures to improve energy performance, along with how the rating will be affected if those measures are implemented.
"It is always useful to check as it may be as simple as switching to low energy light bulbs to take the rating from F – E! If more significant changes are required, there are several no-cost funding schemes out there to help you bring your property up to the required standard.
“Landlords who let their properties out on a periodic basis should be mindful that although the change in regulations may not impact a tenancy which started before 1st April 2018, the failure to provide evidence of a valid EPC will invalidate the execution of any section 21 notice.”
Walton Robinson can instruct EPC testing and energy efficiency upgrades as well as offering expert advice on your property or portfolio. Get in touch on 0191 243 1000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.