From April 2018, the regulations concerning Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) changed for rental properties (and commercial properties). The aim was to reduce wasted energy and costs for the tenant, help lower greenhouse gases and improve the condition of certain properties.
The Minimum Energy Efficient Standards (MEES) requirement for residential properties let on Assured Shorthold Tenancy’s (AST’s) is an E rating. The rating is shown on the EPC graph. It means that landlords must ensure that the property to be let has a minimum rating of E before granting a new tenancy to new or existing tenants.
You will need for all new tenancies of a dwelling/residential property (with limited exceptions) in England and Wales.
You should check the rating on the EPC before you exchange contracts. If the rating is less than E, because it has a poor energy efficiency the property may be unlettable. You need to make sure you can carry out remedial work to improve the energy rating and that you have budgeted for it.
If a buyer discovers post-exchange of contracts, that the rating is lower than E there is no remedy against the seller. Also, the MEES regulations do not impose any sanctions on sellers of properties with poor energy ratings. It is for the buyer to be satisfied that there is an adequate energy efficiency rating for the property.
If you as the landlord believe that the property is exempt from the regulations and the EPC rating is F or G, you can apply to register an exemption Private Rented Sector Exemptions Register. Exemptions only last for five years.
From 1st April, 2020, the minimum rating requirements will apply to all private rented properties in England and Wales regardless of whether or not there has been a change in the tenancy arrangements . To continue with the letting, you will need to make sure measures are taken to improve the energy rating to a minimum of E where appropriate.
If you are buying a property to rent out, please contact us for expert advice and assistance.. Please telephone our Horsham, Worthing or Brighton offices, or send an email firstname.lastname@example.org