From April 2018, Domestic and Commercial rental properties must have a minimum Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of E. This applies first to new lets and renewals of tenancies, and from 1 April 2020 to all tenancies including sitting tenants. At that point it will be unlawful to rent a property that has less than an E-rating.
For properties with long-standing tenants this may be the first time the EPC rating has been considered. If this is the case make sure an assessment is carried out as soon as possible. A lower rating could mean a property becomes un-rentable in the future and can cost a landlord in terms of loss of income until steps have been taken to raise the EPC rating to an E or higher.
Quick wins to help improve an EPC rating can include:
- insulation – a good deal of heat is lost through poorly sealed windows and doors, make sure this is eliminated first.
- Attics – consider thickening insulation to reduce heat loss through the roof, and cavity wall insulation if this is available.
- Lighting – low-energy lighting can be a smart move for landlords and tenants and is a relatively easy solution.
- Smart meter – to help monitor energy useage around the property.
Steven Room, head of residential development at property management company Lee Baron, advises landlords not to be complacent about ensuring their property is suitably energy-efficient. “The first step is to ensure properties have valid and up-to-date EPCs that take account of any changes and improvements made to a building. Once poorly performing buildings are identified, landlords can improve their rating through a few ‘quick win’ energy efficiency measures if not already put in place.”
Penalties for non-compliance will be up to £4000, with Local Authorities also able to issue fines of £200 for landlords who do not have a valid EPC certificate.
Phone Mays on 020 3397 4594 to arrange an EPC, appointments are usually available within 24-48 hours and prices start from £75.