Energy Performance Certificate

An Energy performance Certificate, or EPC, is required whenever a property is built, sold or rented, and must be obtained before a property can be marketed for sale or rent. It gives a property an energy efficiency rating from A (most efficient) to G (least efficient) and is valid for 10 years. There are several reasons to improve your EPC rating, from cutting down on the  everyday running costs of your home, to achieving a higher sale price when you come to sell it. In this blog we’ll be taking a look at the main benefits of improving your EPC rating, and how a smart home fits into this.

New-builds have top energy efficiency

Investing in a newly built or newly refurbished property tends to come hand in hand with an enhanced EPC rating compared to an older property. This removes the need for extensive refurbishment measures to improve the energy efficiency of the property, with the added benefit of lower household bills for the tenants, which is a major selling point.

Aside from this, a newly built or refurbished property will have lower maintenance needs – the boiler, heating system, appliances, kitchen and bathroom should all be future-proof at least for a few years.

With rumours that the minimum energy efficiency standards could be raised further in the coming years, bringing the minimum EPC rating to D, it’s clear that landlords and property investors should consider the energy efficiency of their rental properties a top priority right now.

As of April 2020

Any property that has an energy performance certificate (EPC) rating of F or G – the lowest ratings – will be considered “unrentable” according to new legislation.

Minimum energy efficiency standards for rental properties were first introduced almost two years ago on 1 April 2018.Since this time, the rules have only applied to new tenancy contracts starting after that date, or tenancy renewals, with a required minimum EPC rating of E. However, the fact that the rollout will soon extend to all existing tenancies means that every private landlord in England must be compliant.

What changes you can make

To achieve a minimum EPC rating of E, some landlords will need to make changes to their properties. This could include small alterations such as installing energy efficient lightbulbs and draught proofing, or major overhauls such as replacing single glazed windows with double glazing, updating the boiler and heating system, or adding insulation to the loft and/or walls.

As the world becomes more aware of and concerned by climate change, it is hugely important that landlords and property investors recognise this shift. Today’s tenants are not only looking for reasonable rents, but long-term homes which are energy-efficient and increasingly environmentally friendly. It is a key strategy that can be used when considering your investment options in terms of attracting tenants.