Offa, the UK’s first Shariah-compliant bridging loan provider, has launched a short-term loan system for landlords which is open only in relation to properties with an EPC rating of A to C.
Offa says this BTL bridging finance aims to encourage landlords to invest in energy-efficient properties and increase the proportion of A-C rated properties in the private rented sector.
Recent government legislation requires all rental properties, other than those with agreed exemptions, to have an EPC rating of E or higher to be legally let in the private rental sector. From 2025 this is being raised to an EPC rating of C for new tenancies and in 2028, a minimum C rating for all tenancies.
According to the National Residential Landlords Association there are currently 19m homes rated below C, including an estimated 10m homes in the private rental sector.
Offa’s rates start from 0.49 per cent for purchase and re-bridge and include free valuations.
Bilal Ahmed, the lender’s chief executive, says: “Landlords have made great strides in adding more energy efficient homes to the private rental sector – or upgrading properties to C or above standard – over the past decade. However, more needs to be done as the government moves towards its net zero carbon target by 2050 and landlords have a key role to play in that.
“If landlords are to improve the energy efficiency of their BTL stock, they may need the short-term finance to enable them to do so. Making sure there are attractive options, whilst recognising the efforts to upgrade existing properties, is an important element of this.”
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