Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) were introduced in England and Wales for rental properties on 1 October 2008 as a legal requirement for any property that is let out. They are a result of European Union Directive relating to the energy performance of buildings. An Energy Performance Certificate is valid for 10 years from the date it is completed, it contains information about a property’s energy use and typical energy costs and also recommendations about how to reduce energy use and save money. It gives a property an energy efficiency rating from A being the most efficient to G, the least efficient.
Next year will see the 10 year anniversary since EPC’s were introduced, this will mean the renewal of EPC’s for many landlords who need to be aware of some very important changes that will take effect from the 1st April 2018.
From 1st April 2018 a property must have a minimum energy efficiency rating of E in order for a landlord to rent their property. This requirement will apply to all tenancies that begin or are renewed on or after 1st April 2018, for existing tenancies the regulations will not apply until 1st April 2020.
Where the EPC shows a rating lower than E, so a rating of F or G, this will mean the property is substandard and therefore the landlord unable to rent the property until energy efficiency improvements in the EPC have been undertaken.
Local Councils will have the task of enforcing the new regulations. They have the power to serve a notice and request that a landlord provide details to prove compliance. Where they find that a landlord is in breach of these new regulations, they can impose a penalty of up to £5000. Further penalties can also be applied to properties that continue to be rented out despite the breach and original fine. Such fines will not affect the legal standing of the tenancy which means that rent will continue to be due and payable from tenants.
We recommend landlord’s review their current EPC’s as soon as possible, to see what rating their rental property currently achieves in advance of the new changes. If your property currently scores lower than an E, here are 7 potential modifications you could make to help improve and push up the rating of your property before the regulations change:
1)Lighting – Change any halogen or non-Low Energy Lighting to Compact Fluorescent Light’s or Light Emitting Diodes.
2)Boiler– Change an old inefficient boiler to a modern condensing one as these are the most efficient boilers on the market. This change would reflect a significant improvement on the EPC.
3)Heating Controls – Getting a room thermostat, individual Thermostatic Radiator Valves (TRVs) and Boiler Programmer would also have a positive impact on the EPC.
4)Windows – Replacing old single glazed windows with new double glazed windows will not only substantially help reduce heat loss but will also aid in shielding the property from outdoor noise.
5)Roof Insulation – Consider getting the loft re-insulated if it is currently 90mm or less. Introduce insulation at least 270mm in depth as this will also help avoid heat escaping.
6)Walls – If there are any cavity walls these would also benefit from being filled. This will help spread heat around the property. It can also prevent the property getting too hot in the Summer.
7)Draught Excluders – Fitting these to the insides of doors and windows will improve the insulation of doors and sash windows by sealing gaps that let in cold air.
If you require anymore information, feel to get in touch and speak to either Bruno or Melissa.
If you’re considering renting or selling your property and need some advice, get in touch with REVERE, the award winning Estate & Letting Agent today. We offer FREE property valuations and would love to be of service!
Bruno de Sousa – Revere Property Limited – 0207 223 3922 – firstname.lastname@example.org