Rental Properties Eligible For Grants With Minimum EPC Rating Of E
At the moment all Private Rented Properties need to be a minimum EPC Rating of E to be able to claim any government grants and to be fit for renting out.
This rule also applies to applications for insulation and heating which are too subject to the property having a current EPC rating of A, B, C, D or E.
This rating is due to change to Rating D by 2025 so any properties rated D , E , F & G will no longer be legally able to be rented out or apply for grants .
If the property is currently F & G rated, you will need to fund improvements yourself to get the rating up to an E before you can access any grant funding.
FREE GRANTS FOR LANDLORDS
Insulation Grants For Landlords & Tenants 2022
Home Insulation is very important as it helps to keep your rental property feeling cosy as well as cutting your tenants ever increasing energy bills.
It is very important that you check your loft and walls for adequate insulation as you lose the majority of your expensive heat through both mediums.
Your walls and loft will greatly benefit from having insulation retrofitted.
Energy companies offer free insulation grants to help you make your home more energy efficient, thanks to the government’s Energy Company Obligation (ECO) Scheme.
This blog will inform you about why you need to insulate your home and if you are eligible for a free landlord grant
All Insulation is generally free of charge except for EWI to all tenants in receipt of a qualifying benefit or on a low income.
How do I qualify as a tenant for a free central heating grant?
Tenants in the UK who claim any qualifying benefit could be entitled to a free First Time Boiler Grant under the new Government’s ECO 4 Scheme.
Grants are only available to tenants in privately rented accommodation which does not have, and has not previously had a central heating system fitted in the past.
The applicant would be the tenant who is renting the privately owned property and not the landlord.
You must have the landlord’s permission in order to proceed with a first time boiler grant application.
Tenants in council owned properties, housing association homes, or other local authority run social housing are not eligible for the scheme.
Are there any other conditions that apply to tenants?
This is to ensure that any benefits of central heating being installed is not lost by the lack of insulation.
You would need to discuss this with your landlord if you are planning to make an application and insulation is not currently present.
Why A Scheme For Private Rentals ?
Grants and schemes are available for landlords and tenants throughout most areas of the UK.
Private tenants may not have to be receiving benefits or be over a certain age to qualify in certain areas.
Totally free installation can usually be carried out if anyone living at the property receives a qualifying benefit.
Grants have been around for over 20 years in 1 shape or another and many thousands of people on low income benefits have enjoyed upgrades at little or no cost.
Without this useful spending of public money, many homes would still be in fuel poverty and be suffering increasing fuel bills on a yearly basis.
All funding being aimed at a whole house approach with heating & insulation being upgraded at the same time in order to maximise carbon savings and meet government climate targets.
Ofgem has stipulated that private tenants on low income benefits that are in fuel poverty should benefit from heating & insulation upgrades as they would not be able to afford the required costs involved which could run into thousands of pounds.
Some boilers and storage heaters particularly those in rental properties were in desperate need of replacement but many landlords were unwilling to invest in such a large purchase and so these properties had massive heating bills for their tenants.
This scheme was probably the only opportunity that many tenants had to upgrade their old heating.
Local Authority Grants For Landlords
There are grants available from your local authority / local council for heating & insulation upgrades.
NO BENEFITS NEEDED !
You do not necesarily need to be on a benefit but you will need to be on a low income and meet the scheme eligibility.
The scheme name is LA FLEX or LAD and although is a council scheme , the councils do not run it themselves but merely provide the means to apply. Approved installers carry out the work and then is signed off by the respective councils.
Why Are Grants For Private Landlords Available ?
The government has recognised that after many years of neglect, many rented properties need their insulation and heating upgraded. With many landlords being reluctant to spend the money needed , the government is now providing thousands of £ worth of FREE funding to assist this sector.
Free Grants for landlords have been brought in to reduce energy bills for tenants and make their properties more sustainable.
Many of the tenants living in these homes will be in receipt of low income benefits so will qualify for assistance.
The Government in turn will save lots of carbon for the UK as well as reducing ever increasing fuel bills for low income tenants.
Landlords, Should They Have Access To Home Upgrade Grants?
Many people feel that landlords shouldn’t have access to public funds in the way of grants and should pay for their property improvements themselves .
This is mainly because they have built up a substantial amount of equity in the property.
However many tenants in fuel poverty will benefit greatly and would otherwise live in substandard accommodation and so do qualify for funding.
With the minimum EPC ratings coming in ( from 2025) landlords will have to self fund in the future.
Green Home Grants For Landlords
The last home improvements Grant for landlords and tenants was the Green Homes scheme .
This was a £2 billion scheme, launched by the government, to help pay for energy saving improvements for their homes by installing measures such as wall insulation, solar panels and air source heat pumps.
It was particularly well received as help for private renting pensioners on a low income who are generally in fuel poverty.
The voucher scheme is now closed to all non benefit claimants but grants are still availble to those still in receipt of them or on a low income.
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New EPC Ratings For 2025
Landlords – Be Aware that new proposed EPC Regulations For Landlords state that there is a consultation by the government to change the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards of any private rented property to a minimum EPC rating Of “ C “.
This change is set take effect in April 2025 and will affect all domestic private rented properties in England and Wales.
New MEES Regulations For Landlords From 2025 – Minimum EPC C
Under Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard regulations (MEES), from April 2025 all domestic rental properties in England and Wales must have an Energy Performance Certificate rating of C or better.
It will be illegal for you to rent out a property with a D -E -F or G rating and you could be fined up to £5000
This means that landlords will need to make a lot of improvements to their heating and insulation or they will not be able to rent their properties out and will be laft with a wasting asset.
This new law will mean that lots of landlords may lose out on valuable rental income if they have old properties in their portolio which will become worthless
Landlords are required to have their properties up to a minimum EPC rating of C so these grants will help the private rented sector to achieve this very cheaply.
All New Tenancies from 2025 – EPC Must Be C – Change Of MEES
Currently, the minimum energy efficiency standards (MEES) allowed for rented properties to be let out are a minimum of an E rating on their Energy Performance Certificate (EPC).
Any property that is rated F & G are currently illegal to be rented out and many landlords have been fined for continuing to rent them out.
From 2025, all newly rented properties on the market will need to have a certification rating of C or above to comply with this new directive.
This new regulation will mean that any properties that are rated D and above will be illegal to let out and that they will need to carry out the necesary improvements to heating & insulation as well as a new EPC to bring the property to a minimum C.
MEES Regulations For Landlords – Currently E
Since April 2018 , there are new rules governing the issuing of all new tenancies for private rented properties.
The government have decided that new tenancies can only be granted if the property is a minimum EPC rating of E.
Properties rated F & G on the EPC register can not be allowed to be put forward for rental and it is a criminal offence to rent out any property not complying.
Hefty fines are in operation and some landlords have already been fined up to £5000.
Why The Change?
The changes are to ensure rented properties are continually improved by landlords to ensure a decent standard of living for all private tenants .
Rented properties have been notorious in the past for high bills and fuel poverty as well as a poor standard of living. Many rented properties are inadequately Insulated, have single panel glazing and heating is antiquated.
These new regs will force home improvements on landlords or they will be fined.
This scheme will also assist the government’s net-carbon zero targets for the future.
Landlords should be aware that there are many grants for heating and insulation available to them if they have a tenant in receipt of benefits or on a low income.
Please see below for Landlord Grants and how to apply.
How will The New Regs Affect Landlords?
Having to move from a minimum E rating to a C could potentially cost landlords thousands of pounds.
Landlords will be expected to pay for either insulating their properties to retain heat or use other ‘fabric first’ features that can help to improve heating and lighting.
They can also try to take advantage of grants available too.
Landlords Not Aware Of Change
EPC ratings for domestic properties were introduced in 2007 in both England and Wales.
All homes are given an energy rating once an EPC assessment has been carried out by a qualified Domestic Energy Assessor.
An ‘A’ rating is the best and ‘G’ is the worst. The cost of an assessment is usually around £50
All properties were surveyed by domestic Energy Assessors and given a certificate detailing how efficient the property was found to be.
Every house was given a score of between A – G , with A being most efficient and G being least efficient.
Each certificate lasted for 10 years
A low EPC rating means lower energy bills and will reduce your carbon footprint.
Also A low rated house will be more attractive to buyers when you put the house on the market.
How Can Landlords Improve their EPC rating?
The below list will help you to improve your property.
You should aim to utilise as many as possible.
- Change existing lighting to LED light bulbs – Cost £2 per bulb
- Insulate cavity walls – Up To £1000
- Insulate The Loft – DIY £200 – Private Up to £1000
- Improve windows with double or triple glazing – Up to £3000
- Install an energy-efficient boiler – £1600- £2500
- Use a smart meter – Free From your energy supplier.
- Renewable Energy – Solar panels and ground-source heat pumps –From £7000 – £15000
How Can You Make A Property Energy Efficient?
This can be a very expensive task particularly in older properties but having loft and cavity wall insulation installed should be the first port of call.
These measures not only helps to increase the property’s value, but has also become essential if landlords wish to improve the saleability of the property.
All landlords & tenants and rental properties could be eligible for energy-efficiency grants available under the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme.
This can save you thousands of £ if you are found to be eligible.
This new regulation will be a massive undertaking for the Government to police for the whole of the UK and will take probably 5 years or more to bring this new regulation accros the sector.
Many properties particularly the large old Victorian ones will never get up to this standard without thousands of £££ being spent on external insulation etc and so the governemnt will probably need to make an exemption otherwise there will be a lot of these properties dumped onto the open market as landlords cut their losses.
This will lead to a shortage of rental properties as many of these will have been turned into HMOs and will force a lot of these tenants onto the street.
If you have a more modern property built from the 30s onwards, landlords should still prepare for this change and start to make small improvements to properties on a regular basis as this will catch up with you sooner or later.
Not a match made in heaven unfortunately.
After 9 years of dealing with private tenants to upgrade their boilers and insulation with the use of government grants, I have had to adopt certain measures in order to get the job done !
Getting a grant whether for boiler or insulation through to completion and installed in a rented property has always been extremely challenging to say the least.
You would think that there would be a lot of enthusiasm from both tenant and landlord, not to mention gratefulness.
However, my findings have been that the landlord usually wanted it all done for him / her and would not lift a finger unless he had to!
Tenant apathy was also a big problem with little interest in helping the landlord improve his property.
When I first started out, I had loads of failed jobs much to my frustration!
As a very conscientious type of person, I had many a sleepless night too !
These failed jobs were usually down to :
- Unable to contact tenant.
- Incomplete paperwork.
- No access to property for surveys or install.
- Tenant refusal.
I could never understand why the tenant would be so unenthusiastic towards a grant measure that would benefit them financially ( smaller heating bills ) and make their home more cosy.
The Penny Drops finally
After much deliberation and research which involved speaking to many tenants I finally put my finger on the reasons why.
- A lot of tenants I have come across do loathe their landlord and would not **** on him if he was on fire !
Failure to do repairs to the property , high rents , lack of interest in property maintenance have all taken their toll on the tenant / landlord relationship unfortunately.
- Lots of tenants move on after 6 months ( after running up lots of arrears ! ) so do not want to do something that will only benefit their landlord or new incoming tenant.
Why should they care!
I do find that the majority of my clients are short term tenants.
I wonder why !
No tenant incentive.
Many landlords have happily accepted their free / discounted boiler without making small provision for the tenant whose benefits have made this £2000 gift to them possible.
A small gift voucher or discount off the rent would have done wonders for the goodwill of the relationship.
I do like to react to problems quickly and put a fix in place.
I do have this nailed now and very rarely get a problem with rented property’s.
( What a clever boy am ! lol)
- When I get an enquiry from a tenant , I always insist that the landlord calls me as I explain that we are only allowed to deal with the property owner.
No landlord call = deleted enquiry.
- If the landlord calls I again explain that our installers will only deal with the property owner and that he will have to be at the property for survey and installs.
Any resistance = deleted enquiry.
- I will only supply landlord numbers to my installers so that the landlord HAS to be involved if he wants the boiler or insulation measure.
My Findings- Has it worked?
This has worked out really well as I have found that landlords:
- Will not want to miss out on a £2000 boiler
- Will not be so quick to cancel if asked for a contribution if they have had to put themselves out and attend the property for surveys.
They will have to get up early to catch me out !
If you are working as an energy surveyor / lead generator and want to ensure all your grant applications get installed AND you get paid………….. Only deal with the landlord.
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