Building a Greener Future:
The Government’s Plan to Reach Net Zero Emissions
The impact of the Building Safety Bill
A proposed bill known as the Building Safety Bill aims to increase the energy efficiency standards of residential properties. The changes proposed by the bill will impact developers, investors, landlords, and homeowners who wish to build, buy, rent, or sell their properties. The changes will require significant investments in energy efficiency measures, to ensure compliance with the new regulations.
Do you need an EPC?
A property is likely to require an EPC if it has been advertised for sale, rent or has been modified within the last ten years. An energy assessor creates an EPC after giving a property an energy rating between A (most efficient) and G (least efficient). It is entered into a public registry and is good for ten years.
Timeline – suggested changes if the bill is approved
From 1 April 2023, properties with an energy rating lower than “E” will no longer be eligible to be let by landlords, unless they are exempt from that requirement. Landlords who renew leases of properties with energy ratings of F or G energy ratings are in breach of the Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015 and can be subject to fines of up to £150,000. It will be unlawful for a landlord to continue to rent a property with an F or G rating, as the enforcement action will apply to all current leases with a period of more than 6 months but less than 99 years. If you are currently renting a home with a rating of F or G and have not already taken any action, you must do so right or declare an exception.
The Bill will propose that by 2025 all homes accepting new tenancies in England and Wales must have an energy rating of C or above. If the property has a rating below C, improvement work must be carried out, with few exceptions, and a new EPC must be registered before it may be rented out.
The Bill will propose that by 2028, all rental properties must have a minimum energy rating of C.
The Bill will propose that by 2035 all homes (whether privately rented or owner-occupied) must have the minimum energy efficiency rating of C.
Are there any exemptions?
There are certain exemptions for properties that may not be required to meet the new EPC regulations. For residential properties, some of the exemptions include: Listed buildings where energy efficiency improvements would unacceptably alter their character or appearance Buildings used for less than four months a year Properties that cannot be improved to a band C rating despite all recommended improvements being made For commercial properties, some of the exemptions include: Listed buildings where energy efficiency improvements would unacceptably alter their character or appearance Properties that cannot be improved to a band B rating despite all recommended improvements being made It’s important to note that these exemptions are subject to certain conditions and landlords or property owners must register the exemption on the national PRS Exemptions Register or the Non-Domestic Private Rented Sector (PRS) Exemptions Register. You can find out more information here
Where you can find more information
As the Bill progresses through the parliamentary process, the information provided is subject to change. The UK government’s website provides a comprehensive source of information about the upcoming changes to EPCs.
- You can find more information on the following websites:
- Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS)
- Energy Saving Trust
- The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)
- Gov. UK
These websites offer guidance on the new regulations, compliance requirements, and exemptions. You can also contact a certified energy assessor or a qualified property professional for further information and advice on complying with the new EPC regulations.
Some changes you should consider making
To improve your rating, ensure you are compliant with the upcoming changes and get a fair value for your property whether selling or renting. Below are some of the changes that could be made that could increase your energy efficiency.
- Double/Triple Glazed Windows and Doors
- Heating Systems
- Energy Efficient Lighting
- Roof and Wall Insulation