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EPCs are Evolving(AGAIN) : What Landlords Need to Know

A significant shift is on the horizon for energy performance certificates (EPCs), with the introduction of the new Home Energy Model set for next year. This article, originally published by the NRLA, details the upcoming changes and their implications for landlords.

Understanding the Changes to Energy Assessments

The calculation of a home’s energy efficiency is due to undergo a comprehensive overhaul. Landlords can expect to face increased costs as the new system demands more thorough and time-consuming assessments.

Currently, properties undergo a Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP), resulting in an EPC rating from A (highly efficient) to G (inefficient). The forthcoming Home Energy Model, aligning with the Future Homes Standard, will introduce more detailed methods:

  • Measuring all property windows, moving away from age-based assumptions.

  • Additional assessments for converted attic spaces.

  • A new categorization for properties constructed from 2023 onwards.

  • Consideration of renewable energy solutions like power diverters and battery storage systems used with solar panels.

  • Increased recommendations for the adoption of heat pumps.

Why the Update?

The revision in the assessment method comes after the Prime Minister's decision to step back from the 2028 target of achieving a minimum EPC rating of C across all rental properties, though the commitment to a net zero target by 2050 remains.

Historically, EPC ratings have been predominantly based on gas heating efficiency due to its cost-effectiveness. However, as landlords transition to electrical heating systems such as heat pumps, a discrepancy in energy ratings has emerged. The new model aims to address this by focusing on carbon emissions rather than just heating efficiency, thereby providing a more accurate reflection of a property’s energy performance.

Impact on Existing EPCs

With the government currently consulting on the Home Energy Model, it has been noted that assessors are already training to implement the new system. Set to launch in April next year, it's still unclear how existing EPCs, which typically last ten years, will be treated under the new system. There may be a provision for them to remain valid until the next scheduled assessment.

Practical Implications for Landlords

This transition is likely to increase the time and expense involved in obtaining an EPC, contributing to the financial pressures already faced by landlords. At R&G Property Bristol, we understand these challenges and are committed to supporting our landlords through this transition period with lower Landlord fees and access to the best contractors.

Stay Updated

For the latest updates on the consultation's outcome and how it affects landlords, continue to follow our blog and social media updates. At R&G Property Bristol, we aim to keep you informed and prepared for changes in the property market.

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