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Improving Your Property’s EPC Rating

It will soon be illegal to rent a property which has an EPC rating of F or lower, so you may need to make improvements to bring it up to standard.

As of 1st April next year, all rental properties must meet a minimum energy performance rating of E on their Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). This could result in many property owners having to make significant improvements to their buildings.

According to a recent survey from E.ON, 27% of landlords say they do not know the EPC rating of their property and 49% are unaware of the penalties for breaching regulations. There is a potential penalty of 20% of the rateable value of the property for those breaching regulations after 3 months. This is a substantial fine, but one which is completely avoidable.

Here are some tips on how to get your property up to scratch and avoid paying hefty penalties…

 

Insulation

While costly to install or update, insulation is a big contributor to a good EPC rating. If your property was built before 1920, it is likely to have solid walls. This means that any insulation must be installed on the inside or outside of the wall. If it was built after 1920, it most likely has cavity walls, allowing insulation to be installed in the gap inside the wall.

 

Windows

Double glazing can cut energy bills drastically as around 10% of heat could be lost through windows. If double glazing is too expensive, consider secondary glazing – fitting a pane of plastic inside an existing single glazed window to add an insulating layer of air.

 

Install Permanent Fixtures

The EPC rating only takes into account permanent improvements to proprties. That means quick-fix insulation methods like draught excluders are not important. While they do provide temporary fixes, you should look at permanent fixtures which will help prevent draft and air leakage.

 

Renewable Energy

Renewable technology such as solar panels can allow homes to store energy for many different purposes. If renewable energy is being used for heating, this can contribute to a good EPC rating.

 

Use Your Rating as A Selling Point

If your property achieves a good EPC rating, be sure to advertise this to potential tenants. In many cases, tenants are responsible for paying energy bills, and will look to rent a property that is energy efficient. Be sure to let prospective tenants know that they can save on bills.