As letting agents in Nottingham we are working hard with landlords to advise on the upcoming changes in EPC rules.
Like it or not, the UK government are taking no prisoners when it comes to cleaning up the private rental sector. Landlords are not only being hit in the pocket via significant restrictions to mortgage interest tax relief. There are also some pretty big changes planned next year. And there is one which will soon limit some properties from being offered for rent altogether.
From 1 April 2018 there will be a new requirement to ensure that all rental property let on a new AST can demonstrate an energy efficiency rating of at least an E. As of 2020, all UK rental properties will need to satisfy these criteria regardless of whether or not the tenancy is new or not.
The regulations will be enforceable under law. This is unless landlords are able to provide specific examples of a property having been exempt from the programme (listed property with restrictions on works). Fines can be hefty with penalties of up to £4,000 for failing to comply.
How letting agents in Nottingham are helping landlords
The majority of properties we come across already have a valid EPC in place. If you are unsure, there is an easy way to check whether or not there is a certificate in place by accessing the national EPC register here.
For those properties that meet the requirements landlords can breathe a sigh of relief. You won’t be required to carry out works to improve the rating. At least not for the next few years.
What can you do to improve the EPC rating on your properties?
Landlords with properties currently rated below E on the certificate might want to start thinking of ways to improve the energy efficiency.
It’s important to take the time to read through the full EPC report and ascertain the best ways of doing this. You may well find that something as simple as better insulating the property can bump up the rating significantly.
Don’t forget that each certificate provides a snapshot of a property at a given time. If you’ve had any works carried out on a property after the date of the EPC we would advise to have the property re-assessed. It’s highly likely that the rating will have increased as a result of this.
Finally, we would recommend taking action now to prevent a big surprise when the regulations do come in. Whilst it might seem a long time away, Twelve months can pass very quickly and landlords will be hard stretched to find letting agents in Nottingham that will market a property that doesn’t comply with the rules.
If you have any further questions regarding EPC regulations then please don’t hesitate to contact our friendly team on 0115 981 9651.