Energy Performance Certificates

New legislation governing provision of EPC's for rented property came into effect on 1 April 2020 as Lettings Manager Sam Brown explains

Energy Performance Certificates

Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) are a familiar term when selling or letting property. They provide the energy rating of a property, therefore indicating the typical energy costs for potential tenants before they commit to renting a property.

Landlords must ensure that their property has an EPC prior to the commencement of a tenancy; without these, a landlord cannot enact the Section 21 eviction notice. The EPC should be available to tenants at property viewings, or on request before a tenancy commences.

An EPC outlines the improvements that landlords could potentially make to the energy efficiency of their property.  Relatively inexpensive improvements such as loft insulation could boost energy efficiency, and thus make the property more attractive to tenants.

EPC requirements state that properties will be required to have a minimum “E” rating. This means that if a property is given an “F” or “G” band, the landlord will be legally required to invest in the property to improve the energy efficiency rating. If a landlord fails to comply with this legislation, they are at risk of receiving large fines of up to £5,000.

New legislation regarding EPC’s in rented property came into effect on 1 April 2020.  Prior to this date, landlords had been required to provide an EPC of “E” or above for any property where the tenancy commenced on or after 1 April 2018, it is now mandatory to have an EPC rating of at least an “E” for all residential tenancies, even if the tenant has been renting in the property for some time before 1st April 2020.

There is a limit to how much landlords should spend on energy efficiency improvements, currently £3,500 including VAT.  If the energy rating for a property cannot be improved to an “E” for that sum landlords can then the landlord can apply for an exemption certificate. Records of works carried out (surveys and invoices) must be retained as evidence to submit with an application.

It is widely anticipated that the minimum energy rating will be further raised in coming years, so landlords are advised to consider investing in energy efficiency both for the benefit of the running costs of the occupant, and the longer-term value of the property.  A certificate is relatively inexpensive to obtain, and can be arranged by Symonds & Sampson’s letting agents.  It lasts for 10 years, so won’t need to be updated for a long time. 

It’s important to keep up to date with ever-changing legal and safety regulations covering residential lettings, and our agents keep their fingers firmly on the pulse to ensure that our clients are protected.  Contact our team to discuss letting your property.

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