Mortgage sector urges government to rethink EPC rules for landlords

Mortgage sector urges government to rethink EPC rules for landlords

0:03 AM, 7th February 2024, About 4 weeks ago 8

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Mortgage lenders and advisers have called for a government U-turn on the relaxation of energy performance certificate (EPC) legislation for landlords, new data from the Mortgage Advice Bureau shows.

The survey of some of the UK’s largest mortgage lenders and advisers found that 49% of lenders and 32% of advisers would support any decision to reinstate the EPC changes, by either the current or a new government.

The EPC changes, which were scrapped by the government, aimed to encourage landlords to improve the energy efficiency of their properties by imposing fines for those who failed to meet minimum standards.

The survey was carried out to gauge the views of the mortgage sector on ‘green homes’, as part of its commitment to promote sustainability and energy efficiency in the housing market.

‘Making UK homes more energy efficient’

The deputy chief executive of Mortgage Advice Bureau, Ben Thompson, said: “Climate change is an issue that we all need to take seriously, and everyone has a role to play in making UK homes more energy efficient.

“At a policy and industry level, we have a responsibility to push the housing market to a more sustainable future – one that is as energy efficient as possible.”

He added: “The UK has some of the oldest and least efficient homes in Europe, so the government’s decision to scrap the plans to incentivise landlords to upgrade their properties is not going to help solve the problem.

“However, we also need to consider the concerns of landlords and work collaboratively, where the government uses the carrot instead of the stick to encourage green changes.

“For example, refunding Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) once a property has been retrofitted might be one way to incentivise green changes.”

Best way to achieve energy efficient homes

The survey also revealed that 82% of lenders believe that the best way to achieve energy efficient homes is through collaboration between builders and lenders.

And 18% think that builders alone should bear the responsibility.

When asked what the mortgage industry needs to do to accelerate the efforts of green mortgages, 31% of lenders said that increasing public awareness and education about the benefits of such products is the main thing.

Another 29% said that advocating for government policies and incentives for green mortgages is important.

Incentives for green mortgage products

However, mortgage advisers said offering more competitive interest rates and incentives for green mortgage products as the top priority (25%).

That was followed by developing a wider range of green mortgage products tailored to different needs and budgets (22%).

Mr Thompson said: “Green mortgage products, and the wider promotion of these, is one part of the puzzle, and now we must ensure these are being put to prospective buyers.

“We must face the reality that the UK will need to upgrade its leaky housing stock.

“With energy bills in the spotlight, EPC ratings are climbing up prospective buyers’ wish lists, and if the housing market is to meet net zero targets, properties need to be retrofitted.”


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Comments

Smiley

11:08 AM, 7th February 2024, About 4 weeks ago

So what you are saying is The survey of some of the UK’s largest mortgage lenders and advisers found that 51% of lenders and 68% of advisers would NOT support any decision to reinstate the EPC changes, by either the current or a new government.
We landlords have enough pressure as it is without your click bate headlines mate xxx😂

JeggNegg

11:19 AM, 7th February 2024, About 4 weeks ago

As a landlord I am very happy to improve the Epc ratings in my properties.BUT only when the data in the Epc computer has been update with upto date info, and the assessors are much more efficient in their reports.
I have 1 old property which was recorded in 2013 as WALLS - built with average rating, and in a 2017 the same property the WALLS were rated as Poor and being constructed with a different material. These reports were by 2 different assessors.i am assuming the scoring for the building’s walls will be slightly different.

EPC Killjoy

21:27 PM, 7th February 2024, About 3 weeks ago

Of course the mortgage sector wants to promote mortgages - of any colour, but by impoverishing landlords with needless 'extra insulation', repossessions of rented properties will increase. EPC's are NOT appropriate for "energy efficiency" because buildings do not consume energy - appliances do. Gas boilers, washing machines, dishwashers, lights even heat pumps. Part L of the Building Regulations already imposes a duty for all buildings to reduce energy loss via conduction through the building fabric (proscribed U values). All buildings reach a passive house standard which actually prevents energy getting IN. By the same token it prevents energy getting OUT, but NOT when the building leaks like a sieve ! Air molecules contain moisture which removes mass and radiation when it escapes. Good buildings prevent the moisture and radiation from getting in. They do not need insulation to be retrofitted. see Cambridge University report.

EPC Killjoy

21:30 PM, 7th February 2024, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by JeggNegg at 07/02/2024 - 11:19
My EPC could not cope with the fact that not all of my light bulbs had been upgraded to LED's.

Michael Booth

6:36 AM, 8th February 2024, About 3 weeks ago

Sell,sell, sell . Call me a cab lm out of prs after 25 years its not worth the headache, epc compliance rears its ugly head again, selective taxation sorry licencing by councils ,tax increases through the board and more to come if liebor gain power , draconian legislation , attack attack that's all itis on the very people who house millions of people.

Neil Robb

8:41 AM, 8th February 2024, About 3 weeks ago

If the government was serious about EPC climate controls.
It should look at all properties not just the 14% private landlords .

Leaving 86% out of it. Yes many off them may be a C but a huge amount are not far more than in the private sector.

EPC Killjoy

9:57 AM, 8th February 2024, About 3 weeks ago

Reply to the comment left by Smiley at 07/02/2024 - 11:08
I agree - they should be flagged up as "greenwash".

Paul Hill

6:30 AM, 13th February 2024, About 3 weeks ago

EPC is a joke and is not credible enough to be used for anything, especially mortgages, or the fitness to be rented.
Just before they pulled the EPC changes I employed someone to rate my two properties and both increased a band without me doing anything to them. How did I achieve this? I simply identified the assessor who appeared to be giving higher ratings of other, similar properties in the same street! Whatever "system" they may be using, at the end of the day it is down to an individuals interpretation of that system, which is why it is broken and not fit for purpose.

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