Changes to energy efficiency standards – guidance for landlords

William Birtwell, a solicitor within the Real Estate team at MLP Law considers the changes to energy efficiency standards and the impact upon landlords of both domestic and non-domestic privately rented properties.

Under new regulations, landlords of both domestic and non-domestic privately rented properties will be subject to Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (“MEES”) which will impose restrictions upon their ability to either grant a new lease of a property, or continue to let a property.

Subject to certain exemptions, Landlords are required to make an Energy Performance Certificate (“EPC”) available to a prospective tenant at the time of marketing the property. An EPC is a certificate which shows the energy efficiency of a property. Amongst other information the EPC measures the energy performance of a property and rates it on a scale, ranging from A-G (A being the best, G being the worst).

The new regulations impose a requirement upon landlords to ensure their properties meet the MEES by having a minimum EPC rating of E. From 01 April 2018 landlords of sub-standard properties (properties with an EPC rating of F or G) will be subject to the following restrictions:

  • From 01 April 2018 they will not be able to grant a new tenancy, extend or renew an existing tenancy of a domestic or non-domestic privately rented property;
  • From 01 April 2020 they may not continue to let a domestic privately rented property; and
  • From 01 April 2023 they may not continue to let a non-domestic private rented property.

There are certain exemptions to these regulations and reliefs available to landlords, the details of which are beyond the scope of this note.

Landlords in breach of the requirements will be liable to enforcement action, which could include the issue of a financial penalty (subject to certain limitations).

Our Real Estate team at MLP Law are monitoring the changes to MEES regulations and are working with landlords across the North-West and Nationally to ensure that their leases and tenancy agreements cater to these regulations. We also have relationships with trusted EPC assessors who we are happy to recommend.

If you have a domestic or non-domestic privately rented property and wish to speak to a member of our Real Estate team please feel free to contact us on 0161 926 9969 or at realestate@mlplaw.co.uk.