Landlord and property

Changes to energy efficiency standards

The government has now set a date for when the new Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) will come into force. And with a series of new legislative announcements regarding the private rental sector since 2016, from stamp duty to the impending tenant fee ban, it can be hard to keep up with what’s required of you as a landlord. With this in mind, here’s a breakdown of what you need to know about the changes taking effect from 01 April 2018.

What’s changed?

From 01 April 2018 it will be a legal requirement for any properties rented out in the private rental sector to have a minimum energy performance rating of E on an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). Since 2008 it has been a requirement for landlords to have an EPC for their properties, but there hasn’t been a set minimum standard.

This change will take effect for new lets and renewals of tenancies from 01 April 2018, and for all existing tenancies from 01 April 2020, and will effect both commercial and residential properties.

What could this mean for landlords?

It will now be unlawful to rent out a property that doesn’t meet Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards. This could ultimately leave landlords out of pocket as they absorb the financial costs involved with bringing the property up to code, as well as the potential loss of income if the property cannot legally be let out.

Breaches of this new legislation could also result in a civil penalty of up to £4,000.

What are the benefits?

The call to change energy efficiency legislation was spearheaded by the Residential Landlords Association – the purpose of the new legislation is to not only improve standards for tenants in the private rental sector, but to reduce the environmental impact of the increasing amount of rental properties flooding the UK market.

Equally, it is beneficial to landlords to bring their properties up to code as improving the energy efficiency rating of a property could increase its value and marketability.

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