Landowners and farmers who rent out property will need to comply with energy efficiency targets by 2030 as part of the government’s commitment to improving long-term energy performance standards in rented homes across England and Wales.
Peter Cole, associate partner of Ceres Property, noted that a significant change is being introduced to the private rented sector to improve domestic energy use and landlords should schedule any improvement works to spread costs, as well as seeking advice on grant funding to ease the financial burden.
He also pointed out that the drive to reduce emissions and improve energy efficiency standards means that properties with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of below B will need to be upgraded over the next eight years.
“A large number of older rural properties currently have an EPC rating of D and E, which meet the current law of a minimum rating of E,” Mr Cole said.
“That law will have changed and the bar raised by 2030, as energy performance standards are tightened in line with wider Government targets on energy use and net-zero targets.”
Rural properties are the most likely to need improvement due to their age and the methods of construction, which is often based on traditional materials and techniques.
“Landlords have eight years to take appropriate action and bring these properties up to scratch. In some cases, that may require significant investment,” he added.
Integrating improvement works into the normal repair and maintenance policy could help to cut costs, Mr Cole advised. “What you have to remember is that houses that fall short of the new requirements won’t be able to be rented out.
“The worst-case scenario is that these assets become liabilities – they will be more difficult to sell due to their poor energy efficiency and they can’t be let in their current condition.”
Minimal grant help is likely to be available to help with the financial implications of upgrading, even though meeting the targets is going to need both public and private finance.
“There’s time to consider all the options and make the right decisions,” he added. “This issue isn’t going to disappear and some have described it as a ticking timebomb.
“Seek independent advice from a property expert before taking appropriate action and budgeting for significant capital expenditure– there’s plenty to be aware of with energy efficiency and new standards.”
For more information go to www.ceresproperty.co.uk