EPC and the forthcoming changes:
From April 2018, the proposed legislative changes by the Department for Energy & Climate Change would make it unlawful to let residential or commercial properties with an EPC Rating of F or G.
The new requirements will apply to both domestic and non-domestic as highlighted in the time line diagram below:
1st April 2016 (Tenant’s energy efficiency improvements):
From 1st April 2016, any domestic tenants potentially have the right to ask the owner for reasonable and cost effective (cost effective measures mean those improvements that are capable of being installed within the Green Deal Golden Rule) energy improvement measures to be carried out on the rented property.
What is the tenant`s request process?
Tenants need to carry out all the work in proving that the energy improvement measure they are proposing is i) is on the list of the energy efficiency measures listed in the schedule to the Green Deal Order 2012 ii) the tenant has a way of funding the measure at no cost to the landlord (e.g. by using Green Deal finance, government grants, ECO, other grant funding or paying for the measures themselves) iii) tenants need to produce EPC, surveyor report or Green Deal Advice Report (GDAR) if seeking government funding to fund the measure.
Who would enforce this?
The First-tier Tribunal General Regulatory Chamber will hear and determine applications from tenants where the tenant considers that the landlord has not complied with the regulations.
1st April 2018 (Minimum energy efficiency standards):
From 1st April 2018 the minimum energy efficiency standard for domestic rented properties will be set at an E Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating. This will apply equally to all categories of domestic private rented property.
What triggers the regulations?
The applications will apply upon the granting of:
- a new tenancy to a new tenant, and,
- a new tenancy to an existing tenant.
Who would enforce this?
Local authorities will be provided with powers to enforce compliance with the regulations
Are there any penalties for non-compliant landlords?
Penalties for a single offence may be cumulative, up to a maximum of £5,000 if the landlords did not response to the compliance note issued to them prior to the penalty note.
Can landlords appeal?
Landlords may appeal any penalty notice on the basis that the penalty notice was issued in error (error of law or of fact), the penalty does not comply with the Regulations, or that it was inappropriate in the circumstances for the penalty notice to have been served. The appeal would be heard at the First Tier Tribunal (General Regulatory Chamber).
1st April 2020 (Minimum energy efficiency standards):
All privately rented domestic buildings would require an EPC rating of E.
1st April 2023 (Minimum energy efficiency standards):
All privately rented non- domestic buildings would require an EPC rating of E.
What does this mean to landlords?
Now: Would affect the marketability of the property if the energy performance is worse than E.
2018: Any new tenancy agreement would trigger a mandatory requirement for the property to achieve energy performance of E or better.
2020: All rented property needs to be assessed and achieve an energy performance of E or better.
2023: Landlords of non- domestic priorities would need to assess their buildings and achieve an energy performance of E or better.