Support, Advice and Experience within the Property Market

Government Guidance on EPCs in Rented Property

From Robert Ulph on April 29, 2020

The Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) came into effect two years ago and, among other changes, this meant that a landlord cannot grant a new tenancy with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) below an E rating.

An EPC gives an energy efficiency rating from A (most efficient) to G (least efficient) and in addition to the changes introduced in 2018, from April 2020 all rented properties were due to have an efficiency rating of E or better. The EPC is valid for ten years and they are required whenever a property is built, sold or rented and must be completed by an accredited assessor.

The Government has now issued further guidance on what those requirements are in the current times we are living in. In recently released information they have confirmed that the legal requirement to obtain an EPC before letting (or selling) a property remains in place, but EPC assessments should only be conducted where they can be done safely and in line with guidance relating to Coronavirus.

Key points from the latest Government guidance on EPCs include:

  • Where possible delay the property transaction, and ultimately the EPC assessment until the stay-at-home measures to fight coronavirus are no longer in place.
  • If it is not possible to delay the transaction and assessment, and a valid EPC is not available from the EPC Register, an assessment may need to be carried out.
  • Where an EPC assessment needs to be carried out, the UK Government’s social distancing measures and guidance for carrying out work in people’s homes must be adhered to.
  • EPC assessments can continue where a property is empty.

Importantly, the UK Government’s guidance says that no EPC assessments should take place if any person in a property is showing symptoms of Coronavirus, self-isolating or being shielded.

For those with any booked EPC assessments, the appointment should be rescheduled, if it hasn’t been already, for when it is safe to do so, in accordance with the guidelines and for those with property being managed by agents this will be managed for you.

Everything obviously has to be done to avoid the spread of Coronavirus and these guidelines set that out very clearly.

As always, if you have any questions on these issues or anything in the local property market, please call me.

In the meantime, I wish you all the best to stay safe and well.