There have been a number of big changes in the private rental sector for our clients to consider over recent years and we are looking to prepare our clients for the next challenge.
As part of a government drive to make Scotland more green, legislation has been introduced to the private rented sector relating to EPC’s.
At the moment it is a legal requirement to hold an EPC for your property, so what’s changed?
“Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) provide information on how energy efficient a property is. Properties are rated on a scale from A to G, with A being the most efficient. Information is also provided on measures which could be made to improve the energy efficiency and an indication of the cost of each improvement.
The EPC rating is a measure of the cost to heat and power the home based on a set of assumptions about occupant behaviour. The higher the cost, the lower the rating. Therefore, homes heated by expensive on-peak electricity will in most cases perform worse than homes heated by a cheaper gas or renewable resources like biomass. Equally, properties which don’t retain heat will be more expensive to heat and therefore have a lower EPC rating than properties which are well insulated.
The Scottish government has published draft regulations and guidance requiring private rented sector properties to meet a minimum energy performance certificate (EPC) rating before they can be let to tenants. Properties will need to achieve at least:
- EPC of E at change of tenancy from 1 April 2020
- All rental properties must have an EPC rating of E at 31 March 2022
- EPC rating of D at change of tenancy from 1 April 2022
- All rental properties must have an EPC rating of D at 31 March 2025”
Scottish Association of Landlord, Minimum EPC requirement – update, Retrieved form
There may be further legislation to improve EPC’s further after 2025 but this has not be confirmed as of yet.
But what does this mean?
It means that after April 2020, if you have an EPC rating of F or lower, if your property becomes vacant before you re-let the property the efficiency rating will have to be increased to a minimum of E.
Each property is different and there will be different ways of ensuring that you do this, and there will be exceptions for properties where it simply isn’t possible or if the cost exceeds a certain limit.
We will be contacting all our clients to inform them if their properties are currently below the proposed minimum standard and will be helping advise how to improve the ratings and the cost of doing so.
Although paying for improvements can be a bitter pill to swallow for landlords, on the whole we feel this is a positive thing. More energy efficient properties is not only better for the environment, it is better for the tenant! Reducing their monthly outgoings and insuring that they are happier in their home and that is really important to us. Furthermore, tenants who are happy in their home, are likely to stay longer and appreciate the property.
If you have concerns about the EPC rating on your property or what to have a further discussion about how this impacts you. Why not call in to our property shop or give one of our agents a call.
The next hot topic on everyone’s lips is Legionella Risk Assessments and we will be covering this topic shortly.
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