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Improving the minimum energy efficiency standards

New Policy proposals have been set by the government to take steps in improving the minimum energy efficiency standards across the UK.

Privately rented homes

New Policy proposals have been set by the government to take steps in improving the minimum energy efficiency standards across the UK. The government has committed to upgrade as many private rented sector homes as possible to Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) Band C by 2030, where practical, cost-effective and affordable.

The policy proposal is set towards providing a number of benefits to landlords, tenants and the environment. It has been stated that the proposals will result in the following:

  • reducing energy bills and increased comfort for tenants and supporting delivery of our statutory fuel poverty target of EPC C by 2030
  • potential property value improvements for landlords
  • delivering carbon emission savings over Carbon Budgets 4 and 5, making progress towards our net zero target

The goal is to improve the overall energy performance of the private rented sector in England and Wales. UK housing stock is generally older than in the rest of Europe, according to the consultation document. The potential for improvement is vast and will be a vital part of the governments strategy to meet its greenhouse gas emissions target of net zero by 2050. Privately rented properties make up 20% of the housing stock and are among the least energy efficient. They cost over £6bn in energy bills in 2018 and producing GHG emissions of around 11 megatonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent a year.

How is the Government Supporting Change?

Increase the minimum standards

The key aspect to the proposal is to increase the minimum energy efficiency standards for privately rented properties. Here at Blue Moon Certificates we carry out a survey of your home before producing an EPC report. The house is then placed on a colour-coded scale from A to G, A being the most efficient with the cheapest fuel bills.

Previously landlords in England and Wales were required by law to get an EPC rating of band E or above to let their properties to new tenancies or renewals. However, the government is now pushing to get everyone within Bands A-C. There are currently 3.2 million privet rented properties in England and Wales with an EPC rating of D or below.

Government Funding to Support Proposal

In order to improve the average EPC ratings, investment must be made by landlords and homeowners to improve their score.

Your house’s EPC rating will depend on:

  • The amount of energy used per m²
  • The level of carbon dioxide emissions (given in tonnes per year)

The government recognises the need for investment and as a result is in the process of investing £2bn in England into the “Green Homes Grant”. Providing at least £2 for every £1 homeowners and landlords spend to make their homes more energy efficient, up to £5,000 per household.” Applications opened in September 2020 and will run through until 31 March 2022.

Energy Efficiency Prioritises

It has been recommended to take a “Fabric First” approach to energy efficiency, prioritising insulation before looking at improving heat and electricity. Although landlords can make improvements in any order, below is the suggested list in order:

1. insulation

2. heating and hot water

3. windows and doors upgrades

4. electricity generation measures.

Introduction Strategy

The government look to implement a phased introduction approach. This means that they would apply to new tenancies from 1st April 2025 and all tenancies by 1 April 2028. The goal is to give time for landlords to plan and save for improvements and encourage a “whole house” approach to improvements.

How can Blue Moon Certificated help you?

If you are a landlord or a tenant and are unsure on how these future changes could impact you, please get in touch and give us a call on. Here at Blue Moon Certificates, we are experts in EPC and can keep you up to date with all the latest news and providing certificates if needed. Alternatively, click here to look at some of the key ways that the proposal will impact penalties, compliance and duties for landlords and tenants.

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