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New EPC legislation – clarification and information for landlords

By Guest Blogger on in Industry News, Letting

New EPC legislation – clarification and information for landlords

By Rose Jinks, Just Landlords

If you’ve ever bought, sold, let or rented a property, you’ll know that an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) can be a significant consideration when choosing your new investment. Every property that’s put up for sale or to let is legally required to have an EPC.

However, new research from Landlord Insurance specialists at Just Landlords has exposed quite a shocking set of results regarding the lack of industry-wide awareness to do with EPCs, especially the most recent legislation.

Understanding laws relating to property can seem complicated, and there is often lots of confusion around new requirements and how to keep up to date, especially if you’re a new landlord.

Read on for some key discoveries highlighted by the research from Just Landlords and what this means for you, ensuring you’re one of those in the know.

What exactly is the new legislation?

From 1 April 2018, any new lets and tenancy renewals for privately rented properties must have a minimum Energy Performance Certificate of an E rating. For existing tenancies, the legislation will be put into effect from 1 April 2020.

From these dates, it will be illegal to rent out a property with a rating of F or G, unless your property is exempt.

What if my property falls below an E rating?

Of those surveyed, only 24 per cent of landlords could identify what the correct fine would be for failing to ensure their property meets the requirements of an ‘E’ rating or above. To clarify:

  • You could be fined up to £4,000 for a property with an EPC lower than ‘E’.
  • You run the risk of a £200 fixed penalty fine per property without an EPC.

Since it’ll be illegal for you to let your property to a new tenant (or renew an existing contract) until its EPC rating improves, you could lose valuable months of income while improving your rating, so it makes sense to make changes before absolutely necessary.

How does the new legislation affect me?

As mentioned above, the financial benefits are clear. Landlords and tenants need to know what their EPC rating is, as it could not only help them avoid a fine, but also could save them large sums of money. The fact that our survey found that less than four in ten people in the market are even aware of how improving your EPC could save them money is shocking.

Check out our guide to EPCs on Landlord News for more detailed information and all you need to know about your property’s EPC.

Responsibility towards the environment

Striving to increase the energy efficiency of your property not only improves the quality of life for your tenants and gives you the best possible grounds to obtain the monthly rent that your property could be generating, but it’s the responsible choice for a better environment.

As a direct result of improving your property’s EPC rating, less energy will be required to heat the property, meaning less fossil fuels are burnt and fewer greenhouse gases. Better insulation will also result in less heat escaping to the environment, meaning you’ll be doing your bit for the planet, with minimal extra effort.

Image credit: Nick Youngson CC BY-SA 3.0 ImageCreator