New energy efficiency legislation could have massive impact on UK rental market

New energy efficiency ruling could make property unrentable

Nearly one in ten properties could be unrentable by 2018 if government plans for new energy efficiency legislation go ahead.

From 1st April 2018 planned legislation would make it unlawful to rent a property with a poor energy efficiency rating.  Properties are currently graded from A to G, depending on how energy efficient they are.  Any property being rented out in the private rental sector would need a minimum grading of E under new proposals.

According to data release by Quick Move Now, almost 8% available on the UK rental market currently falls below the minimum requirements being suggested.

Danny Luke, Quick Move Now’s managing director, commented: “According to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), the number of UK households renting property rose from 2.3 million in 2001 to 5.4 million in 2015.  RICS predics that this figure will rise by a further 1.8 million before 2025.  There s little doubt that the UK is facing a critical shortage of rental properties.

“It is, of course, imperative that properties available in the private rental sector are of a high standard.  However, losing around 8% of rental properties would cripple the rental market.  It is commendable that the government is keen to improve the quality of rental property, but for the proposed new legislation to be workable, a great deal of thought will need to go into how landlords can be supported to make the necessary changes.  This is especially in light of the government’s decision to stop funding Green Deal improvements.

“Recent changes to tax relief, stamp duty and lettings fees guidelines mean many landlords are worried about the future.  In fact, there have been reports that as many as 1 in 4 are considering selling their rental properties*.  If significant energy efficiency improvement work is likely to be required, landlords will need to be supported if we want to ensure a vibrant and efficient private rental market in the coming years.”

Breakdown of rental properties by EPC rating - Graph

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