New energy regulations are around the corner – is your property ready?
The new Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) will be introduced in less than three months in April 2018.
The 2015 Energy Efficiency Regulations set out minimum energy efficiency standards for England and Wales. The regulations make it unlawful for landlords to grant a new lease for properties that have an energy performance certificate (EPC) rating below E unless the property is registered as an exemption.
21% or one in five landlords expect to spend between £1,000 and £4,000 on energy efficiency improvements in their property over the next five years, according to E.ON’s research.
However, trying to meet the new legislation does not need to incur such high costs.
Financial support may also be available for landlords who are worried about the potential costs of upgrading their property, through the Energy Company Obligations if tenants meet certain qualifying criteria.
Mike Feely of E.ON has some top tips for landlords looking to improve their properties’ EPC ratings:
- Insulation is very important and can make a significant difference when trying to make a property more efficient. If the property was built before or around 1920, it is likely to have solid walls. Solid wall insulation can be installed from either the inside or the outside. Properties built after the 1920s are likely to have cavity walls meaning that the small gap between can be filled with insulation.
- Use a positive EPC to your advantage! As many tenants are responsible for paying energy bills, some may be willing to pay more for properties that are energy efficient so use this as a selling point.
- Focus on long term upgrades as EPC ratings only look at permanent improvements in the fabric of the building. Try to find permanent ways to stop heat from escaping through windows, doors, letterboxes and even keyholes.
- A property could be losing up to 10% of its heat without properly insulated windows. Double glazed windows make a huge impact when it comes to lowering energy bills as well as reducing condensation and noise. Another way to reduce heat loss is to install secondary glazing which is less efficient but still saves a significant amount of energy while also allowing you to keep original features such as sash windows.