Thursday, 25 February 2021

Landlords may face EPC hike

Landlords may face EPC hike

LANDLORDS are being encouraged to take advantage of measures to improve the energy efficiency of their homes.

Currently all privately rented homes must have an energy performance certificate of at least band E and landlords face fines of between £500 and £5,000 if their property fails to meet the grade.

But changes may be on the way following a recent government consultation.

By law, all properties that are let or sold are given an EPC rating from A (the most energy efficient) to G (the least).

The Government has said that where it is practical, cost-effective and affordable it now wants to upgrade as many privately rented homes as possible to EPC band C by 2030.

Alex Lee, head of lettings at Savills Henley, said: “More details of the Government’s consultation are expected to be revealed in the spring, although we’re still not 100 per cent sure of the timescale. But for existing landlords or anyone thinking about renting out their home, it could be beneficial to start thinking about the necessary changes.

“In some cases they may be eligible to apply for financial help. For example, the Green Homes Grant offers vouchers up to the value of £5,000 to cover up to two-thirds of the cost of specified home improvements.

“Where financial support is not available, landlords are currently expected to spend up to £3,500, including VAT to bring their homes up to standard. But if the suggested improvements cost more, then they may be able to register for an exemption.”

The Green Homes Grant has now been extended to 2022 and in order to qualify households must install a “primary” measure of either insulation or low-carbon heating. Only then are “secondary” measures such as draught-proofing, smart thermostats and double glazing eligible for subsidy.

The cost of the secondary measures cannot be more than the cost of the primary measures and the voucher must be redeemed and improvements completed by March 31 next year.

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