74% of landlords welcome EPC U-turn

74% of landlords welcome EPC U-turn

9:45 AM, 23rd November 2023, About 3 months ago 2

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The government’s decision to drop its proposal that all rental properties must have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of at least C by 2028 has been welcomed by most landlords, according to a new survey by Landbay.

The research, which polled more than 1,000 landlords across the UK, found that 74% of them were in favour of the removal of the EPC minimum requirement.

However, the survey also revealed that some landlords will not carry out energy efficiency upgrades to their properties because there is no longer a legal obligation to do so.

And 26% of landlords say there is a moral obligation for landlords to improve their homes to meet the EPC C requirement.

Improve the energy efficiency of buildings

Landbay’s business development director, Rob Stanton, said: “We applaud the sentiment around trying to improve the energy efficiency of buildings, but we also need to be realistic.

“The UK has a vast amount of older housing that is difficult to retrofit and will be expensive.

“Some landlords said they would be encouraged to update their property if there was more government help such as easy accessibility to grants.”

He added: “Over half of rental properties in the UK are D-rated or lower so landlords now have some breathing space to plan without a looming deadline.”

Still intend to upgrade to a C rating

The survey also reveals that 62% of landlords with lower-rated properties still intend to upgrade to a C rating, but with less urgency.

Of these, 42% said they would make changes at some point, while 20% intend to upgrade as soon as possible.

That’s a slight decrease from before the EPC minimum requirement was scrapped, when 73% of landlords said they intended to bring their properties up to a C-rating.

Within this section, 39% would wait until nearer the previously proposed 2028 deadline and 34% planned to do so sooner.

Upgrading properties to meet the EPC C standard

The main barrier to upgrading properties to meet the EPC C standard is the cost and difficulty of retrofitting older properties, according to the landlords surveyed.

However, one in four landlords (26%) were not in favour of the removal of the EPC minimum requirement.

The landlords say they support the need for energy efficient housing as a social and environmental duty – and that landlords should be improving their property’s energy efficiency.

Some of them also cited the benefits of having higher rated properties, such as lower energy bills, higher rental income, and increased property value.


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Comments

Helen

12:35 PM, 23rd November 2023, About 3 months ago

We already have a legal obligation to have an E rating, which is more than the general population of owner-occupiers does. I am sure there are many more draughty (D,E,F) homes in that category so I am not feeling obliged or guilty about having D rated rented properties. I've lived in D rated properties most of my life and they are not mouldy or draughty. My flats are Victorian with new roofs, new boilers and double glazing. Doing more would be prohibitively expensive.

Easy rider

18:48 PM, 23rd November 2023, About 3 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Helen at 23/11/2023 - 12:35
The average property in England and Wales has an EPC Rating D (60).

Social housing averages C (70) in England and C (71) in Wales.

Owner-occupied properties average D (64) in England and D (62) in Wales.

We should remember that private landlords own a disproportionate number of old (pre-1930s) housing. This is because most people buying a house for themselves prefer one with a garden and parking. Older properties struggle to reach an EPC Rating of 60.

Finally (for now) it really does make a difference who commissions the EPC. Social housing landlords will order many EPCs and the assessor will look more favourably on their properties (I looked at mine that I knew had cavity wall insulation installed at the same time as the rest of the street. Those that were social housing had EPCs that recognised the CWI whereas privately owned or privately rented properties assumed that CEI was absent. They were all injected at the same time - before the Right to Buy scam).

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