This post was most recently updated on May 17th, 2023
The UK government is taking action to make landlords more accountable for their properties’ energy efficiency. In March 2021, the UK announced a new policy that will improve the energy efficiency of rental properties and hold landlords more responsible for making sure their homes meet energy standards. In this blog post, we’ll look at what this policy means for landlords and how they can ensure their rental properties are up to standard.
What Does the Policy Mean?
The new policy requires landlords to upgrade the energy efficiency of their rental properties if they fall below set standards. The goal is to reduce emissions and save money on bills. To do this, landlords must undertake cost-effective measures such as insulation and double glazing, and make sure they are not using outdated energy sources like coal or oil-fired boilers.
Why is this Legislation Important?
The primary goal of this legislation is to reduce carbon emissions from rental properties in the UK. Making sure all rental properties are up to date with their energy efficiency ratings and standards, helps reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and helps create a cleaner environment for everyone living in the country. This legislation also ensures that tenants are living in safe and comfortable homes without having to worry about high utility bills due to inefficient heating systems or outdated appliances.
How Can Landlords Ensure Compliance?
Landlords need to make sure that their rental properties meet minimum energy standards before offering them for rent. To do this, they should hire an EPC assessor who can provide the necessary documentation. This certificate will show whether a property meets the minimum requirements for energy efficiency. If it does not, then the landlord must undertake any necessary upgrades before renting out the property.
In addition, landlords should be aware of other policies that may impact how they manage their rental properties’ energy efficiency. For example, in England, there is a Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES) which sets out minimum requirements for all rented homes in terms of energy performance. Landlords must comply with MEES if they want to rent out their property legally, so it’s important to make sure you are up to date with all relevant legislation when managing your rentals’ energy efficiency.
Landlord Energy Saving Allowance (LESA) Scheme
To help landlords with the cost of improving their properties’ energy efficiency, the government has also introduced a Landlord Energy Saving Allowance (LESA) scheme. Under this scheme, landlords can claim up to £1,500 per property for costs related to making their homes more energy efficient – including things like loft insulation, double glazing, and solar panels. The allowance is only available for certain types of improvements such as cavity wall insulation, solid wall insulation and boiler upgrades, so landlords must understand what qualifies before they start spending money on upgrades.
Green Deal Finance Initiative
In addition to LESA, the government has also introduced a new Green Deal Finance Initiative which allows landlords to spread out their energy efficiency improvements over 25 years through a loan agreement with their local council or energy supplier. This means that landlords can get access to funding upfront but still pay off the cost over time rather than having to pay it all upfront – which can be difficult if you don’t have a lot of cash available right away.
Home Energy Rating System (HERS)
The final part of the government’s plan is the introduction of a new Home Energy Rating System (HERS). This system will allow tenants and prospective tenants access to detailed information about a property’s energy performance before they move in – meaning they can make an informed decision about whether it meets their needs before signing any contracts. The HERS rating system will also incentivise landlords by awarding them points based on how much effort they put into improving their property’s energy efficiency; these points could then be used towards discounts on council tax bills or other services provided by local authorities.
The UK government is taking steps to make landlords more accountable for their properties’ energy performance by introducing new policies and regulations that require them to upgrade outdated systems and ensure minimum standards are met before offering them for rent. By hiring an assessor, complying with MEES regulations, and keeping up to date with relevant legislation, landlords can ensure that their rental properties meet these standards and remain compliant with the law. Ultimately, this will benefit both tenants and landlords alike by saving money on bills while also reducing emissions from burning fossil fuels unnecessarily.