Minimum energy performance in private rented homes
The minimum energy efficiency standard means that, subject to certain requirements and exemptions:
- since 01 April 2018, landlords of relevant domestic private rented properties must not grant a tenancy to new or existing tenants if their property has an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of F or G (as shown on a valid EPC for the property);
- from 01 April 2020, landlords must not continue letting a relevant domestic property which is already let if that property has an EPC rating F or G (as shown on a valid EPC for the property).
Properties covered by the minimum level of energy efficiency provisions
All domestic private rented sector properties in England and Wales must have an EPC rating of E or above if they are:
- let under an assured tenancy, assured shorthold tenancy, regulated tenancy, or certain types of domestic agricultural tenancy, and
- are legally required to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
For the avoidance of doubt, this means that where a domestic private rented property meets these two conditions, it will be covered by the Regulations, irrespective of property type, length of tenancy, location, listed status, property size or any other characteristic. Conversely, where a property is let on a relevant tenancy type but is not legally required to have an EPC, or if it is required to have an EPC but is not let on a relevant tenancy, that property will not be covered and will not be required to comply with the Regulations.
Landlords are encouraged to take action as soon as possible to ensure that their properties reach EPC E by the deadline of 01 April 2020. Government has produced guidance for landlords of privately rented domestic and non-domestic properties on how to comply with the 2018 ‘Minimum Level of Energy Efficiency’ standard (EPC band E).
Where a property is sub-standard, landlords must normally make energy efficiency improvements which raise the EPC rate to minimum E before they let the property. In certain circumstances, landlords may be able to claim an exemption from the prohibition on letting sub-standard property. Where a valid exemption applies, landlords must register the exemption on the National PRS Exemptions Register. Full details of exemptions, and the Exemptions Register is available from GOV.UK.
We are responsible for enforcing this legislation. We may issue a fine if incorrect information has been entered onto the exemptions register or a substandard property is rented without exemption. The total maximum financial penalty per property is £5,000. We may also publish details of the breaches on the PRS Exemption Register. It is a landlord’s duty to ensure that a sub-standard property is upgraded, exempted, or not let.