Private rented properties will soon be required to have a minimum level of energy efficiency. The Private Rented Property Regulations 2015 will make it illegal for a private landlords to let a property with an energy performance certificate (EPC) rating of lower than an E to a new tenant from April 2018 and to an existing tenant from April 2020.

All EPCs come with recommendations for improving the property and the potential uplift in the EPC rating that could be achieved. Improving older properties can raise difficulties about the types of insulation and methods of application. Advice is recommended before any improvements are carried out to a property.

Listed properties or properties in conservation areas, where works can be done to improve the property, may require negotiations with planners. Discussions with local authorities before starting any works is advisable.

At present the Government is conducting a review of the regulations so there may be some change especially following the Brexit Referendum.

It is expected that the Government will introduce a cap on the amount of money a landlord would be expected to spend on energy efficiency improvements. While the figure is unconfirmed, we expect it to be around £5,000. Thus, if a landlord spends up to the cap then they will be compliant.

There are likely to be some exemptions, such as:

• A 5 year exemption where the tenant refuses to give consent for the energy efficiency works to take place
• The Landlord has an independent surveyor’s report stating that the relevant energy efficiency improvements would result in a reduction of more than 5% in the market value of the property.
• Planning permission for energy efficiency works is refused.

We expect that exemptions would need to be registered prior to April 2018, as and when the details of legislation are confirmed.

It seems unlikely that the implementation date for compliance will be pushed back, so look out for confirmation of the details

To gain our advice on the issues in this article or any other rural planning and development matters, call Richard Edge or Alex Orttewell on 01935 852170 or email