Viewing 24 posts - 1 through 24 (of 24 total)
  • Landlord – EPC Changes Coming
  • Premier Icon stingmered
    Full Member

    Apologies if this has been done already, but couldn’t find it.

    I own a flat that I Ivied in for 10 years and have rented out for nearly the same amount. I’ve only just become aware of the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) changes affecting rental properties from 2025, that is to make landlords improve their properties up to a minimum EPC level of C by 2025.

    Having just reviewed my latest EPC from two years ago it’s currently at D, with the potential to move to… D. The minor improvements it recommends (some of which I’ve implemented because, well I should!) will only make a 3 pt difference on the score.

    So what does that mean for me? The government’s own system says the property can’t be bettered energy efficiency wise. Does this only apply if there is a clear improvement recommendation into the nearest band, or will I have to sell? Not sure how that will help the energy efficiency as an owner/occupier would have the same issues.

    Premier Icon bikesandboats
    Free Member

    At the moment rented properties have to be E or above, unless they have an exemption. I know because I rent a property with an F rating but because it has stone walls it is exempt as insulating them would “negatively impact the fabric or structure of the property”.

    It wouldn’t surprise me if there was still an exemption system in place that would allow people to get around the rules. For you that would seem fair if there is nothing else you can do to insulate and I can imagine if every rented property had to be C or above there might be a lack of rental properties.

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    Why is there nothing else you can do to insulate it?

    On the face of it my two flats don’t look like they could be insulated any further but despite it being a 150 year old building and listed in a conservation area there was a lot that could be done.  Very expensive heritage spec double glazing, opened up lath and plaster walls to insulate behind them etc etc

    Premier Icon ThurmanMerman
    Free Member

    Sorry to hear this. Being a private landlord is becoming less and less attractive as all the hoops, hurdles and expenses increase. More and more will be selling-up causing an even bigger housing crisis. Think it’s just a question of time before I give in and sell it.

    Fortunately, for the time being, the EPC fo my property just got upgraded to a ‘C’. Even fitting energy-efficient bulbs can make a difference.

    Premier Icon stingmered
    Full Member

    I knew that was coming…. 😉

    It’s a purpose built flat, constructed in the 1970s. Already has cavity wall insulation, double glazing. It’s on the second-floor sandwiched between two other floors, so can’t do anything about roof insulation. The reason it scores D is that it is electrically heated and hot water via immersion (no mains gas.) The only improvements recommended were around lighting which have mostly been done. There are covenants in the deeds forbidding changes to the exterior, plus trying to get 18 other flat owners to agree would be nigh on impossible (mix of owners / rented.)

    Premier Icon tjagain
    Full Member

    Fair enough – I was just interested but that really does sound like not much more can be done

    Premier Icon bikesandboats
    Free Member

    Looks like properties with existing tenants will be exempt until 2028, so fingers crossed for a long-term tenant I guess?

    Premier Icon g5604
    Free Member

    Sorry to hear this. Being a private landlord is becoming less and less attractive as all the hoops, hurdles and expenses increase.

    Good.

    Premier Icon kelvin
    Full Member

    More and more will be selling-up causing an even bigger housing crisis.

    How so? Are you assuming that if some (or even many) landlords sell up, the homes will then sit empty? If your property is in a picturesque area with high demand for holiday lets, then you could be right. Otherwise, it’ll most likely end up rented out by the new owner, or lived in by them, no?

    Exceptions for properties that can’t be better insulated makes sense. Pushing for all other properties to be better insulated (for the warmth and energy budget of the tenants and to meet our climate change objectives as a country) feels like the bare minimum that should be happening.

    Premier Icon colp
    Full Member

    Regarding the EPC rating and electrical heating, obviously that’s a cost based thing, not an energy efficiency thing. I suspect the EPC system might change in the next few years to stop penalising electric heating.

    Premier Icon stingmered
    Full Member

    @colp I was thinking exactly the same thing. You would imagine as elec generation tips towards renewables it becomes greener to heat by elec. may even be cheaper one day the way gas prices are going! (Maybe not.)

    Premier Icon kingmod
    Free Member

    The UK electric supply is becoming decarbonised and when the EPC mythology is updated to include current CO2 values for electric heating, the rating may well improve.

    Premier Icon MrSmith
    Free Member

    Regarding the EPC rating and electrical heating, obviously that’s a cost based thing, not an energy efficiency thing. I suspect the EPC system might change in the next few years to stop penalising electric heating.

    Think it already has, lot 20 compliant heaters would probably influence an EPC rating
    At some point in the new year i’ll be getting my flat ready for rental, it’s all electric but can’t remember the EPC when i bought it but it’s probably D. now it has triple glazing, new unvented cylinder which is properly insulated, 270mm loft insulation (there was none before and you could see the pattern of the joists in condensation due to them acting as cold bridges) and the old inefficient storage heaters replaced by Lot 20 compliant Quantum heaters with timer/temp control. the bills didn’t change but the flat was warm when it wanted it to be.
    poor insulation in the dormers though so it’s never going to be A/B without serious investment from the freeholder which is never going to happen.

    Premier Icon db
    Full Member

    Good.

    Do you mean good there are less private landlords?

    Or good the regulations will mean there is a good supply of safe, energy efficient rented accommodation?

    Premier Icon footflaps
    Full Member

    Or good the regulations will mean there is a good supply of safe, energy efficient rented accommodation?

    Well marginally more energy efficient…

    Premier Icon midlifecrashes
    Full Member

    I need to look at this again, I have a couple of D rated properties which are due a re-survey, but have had new condensing combis with better controls and more loft insulation since the previous survey. I used to have a link to a good website which had a spreadsheet to help predict likely scores, but it’s been a dead link for ages, if anyone has a good one it’ll save me some googling.

    I’ve also been to visit a tenant and found they’d replaced most of my LED bulbs with incandecents as they preferred the light quality.

    Another thing to do is document improvements well. We had our own house done last year and without evidence, the surveyor must assume the walls etc are “as built”, in our case solid 9″ uninsulated. We showed the work in progress pics of the 75mm Kingspan going on to get a better rating, but if it’s done half decently, there’s nothing to see from inside or out.

    Premier Icon g5604
    Free Member

    Do you mean good there are less private landlords?

    Or good the regulations will mean there is a good supply of safe, energy efficient rented accommodation?

    Both.

    Premier Icon endoverend
    Full Member

    It seems you will have to do what you can to improve the efficiency rating, and when you’ve spent 10k you can apply for an exemption. 10k for a lot of old properties will not shift the rating to a C. I know from mine built in 1880 I’d have to spend 30K (currently low-end E), realistically a lot more as everything you do to an old property is usually a disaster BTDT – and then it would just scrape into C….with solar panels on the roof and solar water heating…
    It’s estimated that 60% of UK rental property is currently in Cat D.
    And then by 2030 there’s talk of making it necessary to be a ‘B’.
    I think we can see the trouble ahead…

    Premier Icon poolman
    Free Member

    Mine are c I just checked, thanks for prompt, there’s a mix of c and d in the blocks. Mid 90s purpose built, no idea why some are d i reckon all are original spec, a few have done the windows and maybe upgraded panel heaters.

    No tenant has ever asked for the epc or expressed any interest.

    Just another landlord tax I reckon.

    Premier Icon kingmod
    Free Member

    Domestic EPC ratings are somewhat subjective based on what the Assessor inputs into the software, so two identical buildings could have different ratings. With the changes coming, a lot of Landlords will be requesting new EPCs.

    Premier Icon footflaps
    Full Member

    Interesting, we have my wife’s old house (Victorian Terrace) rented out. Can’t see that getting to C easily. We’ll probably just sell it rather deal with the hassle of upgrading it.

    Premier Icon TheBrick
    Free Member

    How so? Are you assuming that if some (or even many) landlords sell up, the homes will then sit empty? If your property is in a picturesque area with high demand for holiday lets, then you could be right. Otherwise, it’ll most likely end up rented out by the new owner, or lived in by them, no

    Less small private landlords maybe but more larger company in landlords. Companies tend to require top returns and higher costs. As ever it’s not as simple as simple solutions suggest.

    Premier Icon TheBrick
    Free Member

    Domestic EPC ratings are somewhat subjective based on what the Assessor inputs into the software,

    They seem to have odd weighting too. When we sold our house we moved the property up a level by changing the lightbulbs. I find this crazy as lightbulbs are a consumables. They where getting replaced as they went.

    Premier Icon footflaps
    Full Member

    They seem to have odd weighting too. When we sold our house we moved the property up a level by changing the lightbulbs. I find this crazy as lightbulbs are a consumables.

    Also, with rentals, the landlord has no control over what bulbs the tenant chooses.

Viewing 24 posts - 1 through 24 (of 24 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.