Surely I am not the only landlord worried about new EPC requirements?

Surely I am not the only landlord worried about new EPC requirements?

9:44 AM, 17th February 2021, About 8 months ago 154

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Hello, I was wondering if Property118 could shed some light on the new proposed changes to the EPC requirements – my understanding is that over the next few years 2025 onwards, properties in the PRS have to be rated a C as a minimum. Currently, has to be above an E.

My worry is that the government seems to be applying this rule to all properties regardless of age, although I think it may be different if it is listed. It is not difficult for a new property to meet the requirements of a C or about.

However, as the owner of several Victorian terraces, it is much more difficult if not impossible to get this rating. For example, we do not have cavity walls. I have done all the usual things like loft insulation, double glazing, energy-efficient boilers etc etc but other suggested improvements seem to be a lot of outlay for very little impact on the EPC.

For example, I think the only improvement that has been suggested is using solar panels, but the property is not suitable for solar panels.  I am concerned that I may not be able to meet the new requirements despite my best efforts.

Surely I am not the only landlord who is worried about this?

Is there a campaign to ask for property age to be taken into consideration?

Thank you

Su



Comments

by Gunga Din

15:20 PM, 20th February 2021, About 8 months ago

"I have also heard murmurings that Mortgage Lenders are being asked to check EPC ratings before lending, though they are resisting this"

I remortgaged with Yorkshire Bank in 2015. Later I noticed a new EPC lodged on the register dated around the remortgage application date. It was a work of fiction with many untruths, treating it as a single dwelling (it's three flats) which was probably done on google street view. It scored E whilst the flats are D C and C. Bank denied all knowledge of course, and the assessor's number couldn't be reached.

It took a lot of arguing and persistence to get it removed from the register and I never did get to have a go at the assessor.

by Mick Roberts

17:19 PM, 20th February 2021, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by at 20/02/2021 - 14:04
Great words Helen,

Yes Mortgage Lending on EPC, I've just got my mate cheap house & I sorted his mortgage broker for him & she said Yes this Lender wun't borrow if above an E.
And when/if that is a C, Sxxt will hit the fan.

by Esat Karahasan

21:10 PM, 20th February 2021, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Gunga Din at 20/02/2021 - 12:49
That’s exactly the issue, procedures are not well thought out and there are many who attempt to and many who still manage to abuse in other ways.

I wouldn’t say it needs to be done each time the EPC is renewed, once it has been done keep the photos mainly the bore holes and one with a ruler or tape measure in place against the insulation and your assessor the next time around can accept and submit those.

Get in touch with the last assessor and ask him to supply you copies of the submitted evidence and keep it safe for the next time.

by Mark Hartell

1:42 AM, 21st February 2021, About 8 months ago

My situation is interesting - the house is constructed of solid stone walls (approx 18" thick) and set just inside a National park. The garden to the property is across the other side of a public road.
I recently reviewed the EPC report and recommendations. It would appear that everything I could possibly do - including internal wall insulation (external would not be allowed since this is a stone built cottage in a national park), a new boiler, insulation under the solid concrete floor and solar panels would get me to a D. I estimate the cost would be around 35k and it would completely ruin the character of the place.

There is a way I can elevate to C, B or even A - yes, a wind turbine. Given that the garden is across the road and that this is in a small hamlet in a National Park I think the chances of that being allowed are slim to nil and the cost maybe 50-70k.

by Esat Karahasan

2:52 AM, 21st February 2021, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Mark Hartell at 21/02/2021 - 01:42
Hi Mark,

Actually the recommendations reports are quite limited and there are many other aspects that could boost your property rating (though A and B maybe out of the question) but I’m sure there are indeed other ways that you could get to a C without breaking the bank to the tune of tens of thousands.

Let me know if you would like to discuss this further and I can get you in touch with my Energy team who can give you free no obligation advise on what measures may work for your specific property.

by Bob S

12:00 PM, 21st February 2021, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Esat Karahasan at 20/02/2021 - 21:10
That’s really encouraging news Esat that previous ‘evidence of’ taken by an assessor 10 years previously can be used for the new assessment as the experience of some of the comments here is that that is not the case at all. You indicate that you are an assessor in your earlier comments, perhaps for the benefit of LLs going through round two of the 10 year cycle which parts of the assessors guides (page and paragraph) allow LLs to call upon previous assessors evidence and indeed what evidence of new works will be acceptable. Also, whether there are differences between the accredited EPC governing bodies (Stroma et al) that would point LLs towards a particular assessor when we do our due diligence on the EPC government web site.

by Bob S

12:42 PM, 21st February 2021, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Gunga Din at 20/02/2021 - 15:20
On the subject of EPCs and lending I received the following from a direct question that I asked:

“ The easiest answer is to say that the trend is that more lenders are starting to ask for these. From a buy to let point of view there can be issues if there is no certificate or a low rating. From a residential point of view there are actually a couple of lenders offering slightly better deals for properties with A and B ratings. I suspect that this trend will become more widespread.”

As with all things they are never necessarily black-and-white but it does suggest a direction of travel…

by Esat Karahasan

13:16 PM, 21st February 2021, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by ROBERT STAMP at 21/02/2021 - 12:42
Lenders requesting EPCs and rejecting lending on those that don’t meet the MEES standard (minimum ImE rating) is actually already a widespread norm across the industry.

They are doing this in both residential, commercial and buy to let applications as well as remortgaging applications.

I have personally dealt with clients having to rush improvements just to get sales and/or refinancing through.

by David Price

13:29 PM, 21st February 2021, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Esat Karahasan at 20/02/2021 - 21:10
My experience of EPC's is that photographs must be less than three months old to be considered, so taking photographs to be used ten years hence is futile - unless the rules are changed.

by Esat Karahasan

13:53 PM, 21st February 2021, About 8 months ago

Reply to the comment left by David Price at 21/02/2021 - 13:29
Your not wrong and it’s not that rules have changed, it’s just that during an audit you can explain and prove that these photos (now 10 years old) where taken by an accredited assessor and that it would be a challenge to have to create bore holes and the like to re-evidence every EPC renewal. This can be supported with other measurements and fresh evidence and in most cases would pass an audit collectively.


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