A new year is often a time for setting goals and making plans for the year ahead. At The Apartment Company we are always reviewing how we can improve our offering to both our landlords and tenants. As landlords, we know you are used to changes in legislation and hopefully you have made plans to get your properties ready for the change in law in April 2020.
Since April 2018 you have been required to follow rules regarding the minimum energy efficiency standards (MEES) for your properties with regard to new tenancies. This meant that any new tenancy required your property to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) with a rating below E. At the time, we instructed our landlords to make sure that all their properties met this minimum requirement. The reason being that, as of April this year, any property, whether it has an existing tenancy, or continuing and irrespective of the tenancy length, is required by law to meet this minimum energy efficiency standard.
The story doesn’t end here, and if you have works planned on your property it may be worth bearing in mind that the rumblings are that the MMES may rise to an EPC rating of D or below in the next couple of years. Ensuring your apartments make the grade now rather than having to conduct additional works down the line could save you in both time and money, and help prevent void periods.
Should you be a new landlord or thinking of investing in the future, you may be eligible for a six-month exemption from of the MEES regulations under specific circumstances. Another exemption you could possibly be eligible for is if you can demonstrate that installing energy efficiency measures in your apartment could reduce its market value by more than 5%. Exemptions must be registered on the online Private Rented Sector Exemptions Register and approved, otherwise you could open yourself up to financial penalties.
We know that this tightening of the MEES regulations is yet another obligation you have to follow as landlords, and at The Apartment Company our lettings team are dedicated to helping you stay compliant in all aspects of lettings. Should you have a property with an EPC rating below E, our advice would be to act now. But with speculation growing that the minimum requirement will rise not only to a D but to a C in 2022, maybe it’s time all landlords started to review their property portfolios and put plans in place.
Whatever your plans are for your property portfolio, we are always here to support and guide you to help you make the most informed decisions regarding your portfolio. If you would like to know how to maximise your rental apartments in 2020, come and talk to our Lettings Team at The Apartment Company or give us a ring on 01225 303870.