April 2020 is the next date for your diary.
Whether you manage a property yourself or via an agent, you should be aware of MEES by now. Introduced back in 2016, this legislation was seen as a tool to improve the overall standard of living for tenants by requiring homes to be made more energy efficient, leading to lower heating bills and reducing the number of tenants affected by fuel poverty. The bigger picture, of course, is to contribute towards the UK legislative targets of reducing carbon emissions (CO2) for all buildings to around zero by 2050.
April 2018 was the last stage in this process. At this point, the legislation said you could not grant a new tenancy to a new or existing tenant if your EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) rating was below a Band E. From April 2020, you will be unable to rent any property rated below Band E.
Are there any exemptions?
Yes, landlords are exempt if:
- They have carried out all cost-effective energy efficiency improvements.
- Measures identified by Green Deal or other Government schemes are not cost effective
- If third party consents are not available (consent from tenants, planning authority etc).
Are there any penalties for non-compliance?
Yes. Failing to comply could result in receiving a fine of up to £5,000.
This is not the only reason to make sure you comply. We are dealing with a growing number of calls from landlords, some concerned about the constant changes in legislation and others who are experiencing problems when serving notice to their tenants. A qualifying EPC, gas safety certificate and a signed lease are just a few of the documents that are required for a legal tenancy. Should you need to go to court to regain possession of your property, your paperwork MUST be complete otherwise your application will be denied, causing further delays and potentially much bigger financial losses. Don’t be one of the landlords trying to cut corners to save a few £’s. This could cost you a whole lot more in the long run.
If you are unsure whether you have everything required for a legal tenancy, please contact our officies and speak to one of our ‘in house’ Lettings or Domestic Energy Assessor professionals.