The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property)(England and Wales) Regulations 2015 establish a minimum level of energy efficiency for privately rented property in England and Wales. This means that, from April 2018, landlords of privately rented domestic and non-domestic property in England or Wales must ensure that their properties reach at least an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of E before granting a new tenancy to new or existing tenants.
These requirements will apply to all private rented properties in England and Wales, even where there has been no change in tenancy arrangements:
- from 1 April 2020 for domestic properties
- from 1 April 2023 for non-domestic properties
Setting long-term energy performance standards for the domestic private rented sector in England and Wales
Government has committed to look at a long term trajectory to improve the energy performance standards of privately rented homes, with the aim for as many of them as possible to be upgraded to EPC Band C by 2030, where practical, cost-effective and affordable.
With a view to a consultation in the autumn of 2019, we are exploring policy design options and will be running regional stakeholder workshops in England and Wales this summer to discuss options. While the workshops are aimed primarily at domestic landlords, we would welcome the input of other stakeholders and interested parties such as the supply chain, local authority officers and estate agents.
Amendments to the Regulations
The Regulations were subsequently amended in June 2016 to postpone the dates on which the Private Rented Sector Exemptions Register will open to domestic and non-domestic landlords.
The Regulations were amended again in March 2019, with respect to the domestic sector only, to include a capped landlord contribution requirement in the event of the non-availability or insufficiency of third-party funding. Consequential amendments were also made.
The domestic property regulations will be enforced by Local Authorities. The non-domestic property regulations will be enforced by Local Weights and Measures Authorities.
The guidance is aimed at landlords, Local Authorities, Local Weights and Measures Authorities and others with an interest in the private rental sector, such as letting agents and other property management service providers. The documents provide guidance and advice on:
- scope of the regulations: the steps a landlord should take to determine whether their property is covered by the regulations, and the steps they should take to ensure their property complies with the minimum level of energy efficiency
- relevant improvements: how a landlord can identify appropriate energy efficiency improvements for their property
- landlord costs (domestic only): how a landlord can work out their financial obligations and investigate funding options available
- cost effectiveness (non-domestic only): how a landlord can determine whether particular improvements would be cost effective to install in a non-domestic property
- exemptions and exclusions: the exemptions framework and the steps a landlord should take to register a valid exemption
- enforcement: the enforcement framework and the options open to enforcement authorities when policing compliance with the minimum standards, including information on fines and other penalty options
- the appeals framework: landlord appeals will be heard by the First-tier Tribunal, part of the court system administered by Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service; the guidance discusses the steps a landlord will need to take to lodge an appeal, and how that process will be managed.
The National PRS Exemptions Register
If a landlord believes that an EPC F or G rated property they let qualifies for an exemption from the minimum energy efficiency standard, that exemption must be registered on the PRS Exemptions Register – a self-certification database.
Detailed information on exemptions criteria is set out in the published guidance. A summary of exemptions types and the evidence requirements is also available.
Landlords (or a landlord’s agent) can register an exemption.
If Assisted Digital support is required to register an exemption please get in touch by email PRSRegisterSupport@beis.gov.uk or call the digital helpline on 0333 234 3422.
The Assisted Digital service provides digital support in lodging an exemption on the register, but it is the responsibility of the landlord to ensure that their property meets the eligibility criteria for an exemption. The service is not able to provide advice on whether individual properties meet the criteria for an exemption.
Members of the public can: