Huge changes to EPCs may be coming into play in 2025. But what does EPC mean? How is it going to impact you? And how much will it cost?
As we head into the autumn and winter months, our focus is starting to shift to bills and energy efficiency. The Government has drawn up changes to protect the world from climate change, and these changes will impact selling or renting out a property. According to recent survey statistics,* almost 60% of homes in the UK have a D rating or lower which means EPC changes will affect the majority of landlords in the UK. Concerned about how these changed affect you? Here’s all you need to know...
What is an EPC?
In short, an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) measures the energy efficiency of a property on a scale of A-G. These measures were introduced in 2007 and are now a legal requirement for an owner to obtain before the property is sold, let or built. EPCs are currently valid for 10 years.
What is the best and worst EPC rating?
The most efficient homes – which will have the lowest fuel bills – are in band A. The certificate will tell you on a scale of A-G, the energy efficiency of your home along with the potential scale after improvements are made, with 'A' being the most efficient home. Better-rated homes should have less impact on the environment and are more sustainable.
What EPC changes may be taking place?
From 2025, Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) requirements could become more stringent. Properties will no longer be able to be rented out if the EPC doesn't meet a minimum C rating. The current bar is a minimum rating of E.
And it may not be as simple as only replacing the boiler to achieve the necessary EPC rating. Older properties may need much more done to them – replacing windows and improving loft insulation, for example.
What are the benefits of a ‘greener’ property?
Having a ‘greener’ property can really help to attract tenants and even improve the rental return you can get. One in 10 renters have said they would be prepared to stay in their home for longer if changes were made to it and a significant number would be prepared to pay more for these changes – for example, 18% said new windows would justify an increase in rent**.
A modernised home with green credentials could help you attract a wider market – having a nicely decorated home with eco mod-cons will appeal to a growing number of people looking to live not only in a modern property, but one which is environmentally friendly. An initial outlay could see you generate a higher rental for many years to come. This could out-weigh the initial cost of making your property more energy efficient.
How do landlords feel about the changes?
A survey conducted by The Mortgage Works*** (TMW) comprising 600 landlords found those with affected properties felt they would not be able to complete or finance the works needed in the time set out by the government.
3 tips for moving towards a greener property:
These are low cost options that you can do today:
- Check for drafts and use excluders to prevent them, or fillers for gaps between skirting and floorboards
- Switch to LED lightbulbs if you haven’t already. They last longer than traditional lightbulbs and are around 80% more efficient
- Switch to a modern eco-friendly shower head which still delivers good pressure but saves energy and water
Finally, think ahead – 2025 may seem a way off but if you start now and assess any major changes you need to make, you’ll be able to spread the cost and avoid any last minute stress of meeting any potential new regulations – as well as improve your rental value sooner. Think not only about efficiency but also the changing world – electric cars will become more prevalent so consider a home charging point. The Government has recently announced that new-build houses must be fitted with charging ports from 2022 and no doubt renters and home-buyers will come to see this as an essential feature in years to come. You could get an EPC certified surveyor to your property and get a suggestion of how much it would likely cost to get your property up to the new standard. You may even be able to get a grant towards installation costs – and widen the rental attractiveness of your property.
Whatever you decide to do, you’re not alone. We’re here to help. And, the first step to improving your property’s rental value is to get a quick and easy, 60-second valuation.