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Energy Crisis - few landlords know of EPC legal changes

Only 15 per cent of landlords say they are fully aware of changes to laws surrounding Energy Performance Certificates in the private rental sector.

That’s the claim from the Shawbrook Bank, which has conducted a survey of 1,000 UK landlords.

From 2025, all newly rented properties will be required to have an EPC rating of C or above. Currently properties only require an EPC rating of E or above. Existing tenancies will have until 2028 to comply with the new rule changes.

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However, with low awareness of the changes in much of the landlord community - at least according to the survey’s findings - the bank foresees problems. 

Some 25 per cent of landlords surveyed said they had little to no knowledge of the forthcoming changes, with long-time landlords – those who have been renting out properties for over 10 years – found to be less aware of the changes and what impact this could have on their properties.

 

 

The bank’s Emma Cox - sales director - says: “The true extent of what this legislation could mean for the market has not yet been properly realised. Inaction could see a considerable percentage of the private rental sector declared unrentable or unsellable within a matter of years if landlords don’t take important steps now.

“Making changes to improve a property’s energy efficiency rating will help to improve the overall energy efficiency of the UK housing stock and to assist the government in meeting the ambitious net-carbon zero targets set out earlier this year. But on a more direct level, making the improvements ahead of the impending 2025 deadline will ensure that properties remain commercially viable for the short and long term for landlords. 

“Putting off making necessary changes could leave landlords exposed to extended void periods when their property can’t be rented out while works are being completed.

“Mortgage lenders, and key players in the market, have a big role to play in supporting landlords by helping them to understand the new legislation, the potential impact this could cause and how to take action, if required. Our research indicates a clear gap in landlord’s understanding of how the changes will impact them and their current yields. As well as these risks to landlords,, renters may also be put in an even worse position as they compete for a smaller number of properties that are rated C or above after the 2025 deadline.”

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  • Robert Nottingham

    I dare say that the 85% don’t read Landlord Today…..

    I say again, the end of the PRS is nigh!

    Theodor Cable

    And what is this Govt. going to do if all those PRS houses are unoccupied?

     
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    There have been no changes to the EPC requirements since EPC E became mandatory everything else is a proposal! The bill has not yet been published and although it is likely that EPC C will be a requirement by 2026 & 2028 it is not law yet. The claim from Shawbrook Bank as stated here is misleading and factually incorrect.

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    Beat me to it! I do despair about this being reported as fact when it's still at proposal stage. However the publicity doesn't do too much harm as landlord responses are largely negative and usually along the lines of "I'm bailing out/raising rents/moving to holiday lets" and so on. Maybe the dozy politicians and civil servants may take note and hang fire or dilute as appropriate. I live in hope!!
    If it does go through (as I suspect it will) they however have no excuses for the consequences of their actions - my MP for one has received more than one email from me on this one

     
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    The expectation of this Government that LL will spend the money required, assuming the improvements can be made (many cant with tenants in situ) is ludicrous. The step change is too great and in many cases almost impossible given the age of the housing stock. They are just going to wreck the PRS. Reduced rentals will increase rents and tenants will pay. Well done Boris! Find someone else to hit your green targets.

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    An EPC score is total pot luck. Properties can gain or lose points for no apparent reason.

    One of mine was F25 in November 2018 when an estate agent listed it, then G14 in January 2020 when I got my regular assessor to advise how best to improve it. Nothing had changed in that time. It still had no insulation, single glazing, no heating, etc.

    Another one was E48 in January 2011 when an estate agent listed it, then D67 in January 2022. Very little has changed. It still has the same ancient night storage heater. The first assessor failed to spot the cavity wall insulation but that's about the only difference.
    Even though replacing the storage heater would bring it up to a C rating it isn't on the list of recommendations, whereas a gas central heating system at 5 times the cost is. The other recommendation was solid floor installation which could only be done if I evicted the tenant.

    Another one was D57 in December 2008, then E47 in December 2015 even though the roof had been insulated between those dates.

    So with such discrepancies in the assessment process and incomplete lists of recommendations how are we supposed to know what to do? Should we just have multiple assessments done until we get one we like?

    At the very least assessors need to give us a full list of improvements we could make and how many points each would gain. Some can only be done when the property is vacant, others don't inconvenience a tenant. We need the full range of options

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    At £65 a time how do you expect to get a sensible thorough EPC. The whole system is a joke. EPCs are still weighted towards gas due to cost, and against electric which comes from renewables, mad!

     
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    Such proposals were/are all in the name of making privately rented properties on a par with privately owned properties which, as many of us are aware, total garbage.
    Once again, an ill considered proposal aimed at Landlords from the Government, based on totally false information.
    Additionally, as has already been stated, there is a great discrepancy in the actual situation in regard to the energy measures within a property and those actually "allowed for" within EPC assessments, such as insulation in false ceilings and/or in roof voids etc.
    I believe it is fair to state that, if 2 EPC assessors undertook an assessment of the same property the likelihood of their assessed rating/s being "in the same ball-park" as each other is unlikely.

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    Don, you have a fair point here I have 2 Flats in a Victorian 2 Storey house used as 2 Flats since 1917 from Parish Records and Regularised by me in 1992 to comply with Building Regulation’s of 1991 and Certified. The 2 Flats have the same EPC, GF & FF while GF one has to be much warmer because it has original Ceilings plus extra dropped Insulated Ceiling’s through out plus Double Plaster Board.
    Also another matter I had to get them both HMO Licensed twice now coming due again (one Selective & one Additional), even though the rules say it wouldn’t need a license if compliant with 1991 Building Regulation’s. We don’t have a leg to stand on, they can do what they like with us.

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    Hi Mike, They certainly appear to do so. Unfortunately the Landlord association/s that are meant to have the ear of Government must just be in a "buddy buddy" arrangement with those advisers they meet because we are constantly faced with additional impositions and costs - some of which are valid but others have little or no rationale behind them whatsoever.
    Unfortunately we mere mortal Landlords will be unlikely to be given the opportunity to meet with Governments and/or their underlings in a bid to provide them with an input "from the other side" because the "system" falls rather short of being a democratic one.

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    So I dug this out from an article that I had bookmarked
    "Latest surveys show that only 2% of homes currently have A and B EPC rating, with approximately around 85 per cent having either C or D rating. Of the 4.5 million private rented homes in the UK, it is estimated that 1.7 million properties will never achieve an EPC rating of C or higher. "
    Now I've got a really good bunch of trades blokes that I can call on to do stuff for me, but getting jobs scheduled these days is really tricky, and getting hold of materials is still a challenge, and costly! Add in a few million PRS properties being upgraded over the next 3 - 4 years ... really??

    Theodor Cable

    You are right......Ain't gonna happen!!!!!

     
  • George Dawes

    House near mine the windows fell out , one into my backyard !

    Still got a c due to low voltage lights . I spent a fortune modernising and got a c too ..

    Whole thing is a load of twaddle

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    Believe it or not I actually have a twaddle gauge

    The Twaddell scale is a hydrometer scale for reporting the measured specific gravity of a liquid relative to water. ... The Twaddell scale is only used for liquids with specific gravity greater than that of water. The scale was used in the British dye and bleach manufacturing industries.

     
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    I have a flat in a block of flats. The flat has a combi boiler, double glazed windows and energy efficient bulbs - I am not sure what else I can do to increase the EPC as I can’t force the whole block to put external insulation up and the flat is so small that I can’t afford to lose any space by insulating internally either. Are the new EPC deadlines the same for a flat in a block? Any suggestions / advice would be greatly appreciated.

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    Sorry just noticed previous comments stating that the law hasn’t actually come into effect yet but when it does I would like to be prepared 😏

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    Kyra - You and the rest of us...... i feel that for some of us there is no way to prepare, we know right now that there is no way we can reach a C this side of a crazy amount of money, which we are not prepared to pay, so if (when) this comes in ....... the game is up and so are the properties (up for sale).
    This is a battle we cannot win, no one likes LL's, we are a group of people that will always be seen in a bad light, irrespective of the actual truth we make great whipping boys, so long as the govt introduce ways in which they can make us improve, then it takes away the focus from themselves of not building anywhere near enough new social properties. Classic distraction tactics.

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    I see too much Social Housing, too many people on it that shouldn’t be in it, loads more have their name down knowing it will come around sometime even though they could make their own way. I see less than 30m working out of a population of 65m. I see private LL’s unfairly treated and plainly wronged and disadvantaged , as apposed to other housing providers. completely against competition rules.

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    The leader (labour) of Norwich City Council enjoys a subsidized (by the tax payer) rent in a council house, so do many union leaders all on £100k + per year, shouldn't something be done here ? but don't hold your breath on this one, cause it ain't happening anytime soon, if ever. disgraceful !

     
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    Energy Crisis is right, not just Insulation either, gas prices crisis, electric prices crisp, now water meters been forced in that’s will be like another massive energy bill the whole idea behind it. Big water Companies ripping everyone off no incentive for them to provide a cost efficient service, they can’t even fix a leak, an A road main leak near me is continuously leaking 10 years regardless of how many attempts to fix. This is a massive not for profit Company, so waste, spend and change all they want no problem load it on,

  • Theodor Cable

    Andrew - That is unforgivable.
    Maybe a letter to a few newspapers??????????
    Quit a few would love that one....

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    In Sandwell, labour run, labour councillors have council properties and second homes in beauty spots !

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    I can well believe that Edwin, the loony left are the worst of the lot of them when it comes to looking after number one

     
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