The energy efficiency of properties is a growing theme and is likely to take more of a centre stage in the coming years. The most pressing consideration is for landlords, who will soon need to ensure that any property they let out achieves and Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) of at least a C.
Currently, the minimum energy efficiency standards (MEES) allowed for rented properties are a minimum of an E rating on the EPC. But from 2025, all new tenancies will require a certification of rating C or above and, from 2028, this will apply to all existing tenancies.
Upgrading a property from an EPC rating of E to and EPC rating of C is likely to carry considerable cost with potential works including improving wall and roof insulation, installing double or triple glazing and installing a more energy efficient boiler. Other methods of improving the EPC rating could include investing in renewable energy, using products such as solar panels and ground-source heat pumps.
It will be beneficial for landlords to plan for the implementation of these regulations sooner rather than later. Landlords we speak to on a daily basis often don’t know the current EPC rating of their property, so we are now speaking to them about their responsibilities and the upcoming changes. We are already seeing a change in the way Lenders are offering products, with a variety of Green and EPC products now available and we have access to exclusive products, often with lower rates and fees than those that are available direct to brokers.
For example, we have a range of specialist products that promote greater energy efficiency as they are only available on properties that have an EPC rating of A, B or C. These are 7-year fixed rate products with free valuations and a 1% fee and rates start from as low as 2.65%, varying on the property’s individual EPC rating. They are available on HMOs and multi-unit freehold blocks as well as standard properties. We anticipate there will be more products like this, and products that offer capital raising to help landlords improve the energy efficiency of their properties, in the near future.
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