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29th March 2020

The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015 require that Landlords provide tenants with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) for a property being rented under a qualifying tenancy (including an assured shorthold tenancy).  The certificate provides a tenant with information about a property’s energy use and typical energy costs.

Since 1 April 2018, it is been unlawful for a landlord to grant a new tenancy or to renew a tenancy unless the property being rented had an efficiency rating of E or higher (unless the property was covered by a specific exemption). Any tenancy already in place at the date the rules were introduced and which was not subsequently renewed was not subject to the minimum EPC requirement. For further information please see here:

https://www.aspireresidential.co.uk/news/landlords/40-epc-s-what-are-the-requirements

From 1 April 2020, minimum energy efficiency standards (MEES) will now apply to existing tenancies as well as new tenancies. This means that it will now be unlawful to rent a property, regardless of whether it is a new tenancy, a renewal of a tenancy or an existing tenancy, unless the property has an EPC rating of E or higher. 

A number of exemptions are still available including;

 

  • A five-year exemption may be obtained if it can be demonstrated that introducing energy efficiency measures would devalue the property by more than five percent.

 

  • Where the landlord can demonstrate that energy improvement works cannot be undertaken because they are unable to obtain a third-party consent to perform such works.

 

  • All improvements have been made up to the costs cap of £3,500 (inc. VAT), but an “E” rating has still not been achieved. This exemption lasts 5 years.

 

  • A high cost exemption where no improvement can be made as the cheapest recommended measure would exceed £3,500 (inc VAT). This exemption last 5 years.

 

  • A specific exemption relates to cavity wall insulation where this is the only improvement which can be made however it would negatively impact the fabric/structure of the building.

 

  • If someone has recently become a landlord then under certain circumstances, a 6 month exemption can be applied for to allow the property to be improved to a rating to “E” or above, or to register a valid exemption.

 

Where a landlord wishes to rely on one of the exemptions, it must be listed on the Private Rented Sector Exemptions Register.

If you are unsure or are concerned about the impact of these changes on your rented property, then please give us a call for further information and advice.

 

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