min read

EXCLUSIVE: Landlord reveals why his green upgrade cost £150,000


A landlord who raised a rental property's EPC from a band F to an A has urged others to make energy efficiency improvements that benefit both their property and their tenants.

James Tanner’s five-bedroom Edwardian terraced house (main and other pictures) in London has the best possible rating following a ‘big green upgrade’; the loft, roof and front and back walls were insulated, solar panels and a new efficient gas boiler were added along with double glazing as part of a £150,000 renovation.

Tanner, who has a portfolio of four rental properties, is a developer of energy efficient homes and helps other landlords improve their EPCs, tells LandlordZONE that making these energy efficient changes – particularly adding insulation - when you’re doing a re-fit is a no-brainer.

However, making improvements at other times is invaluable to lower bills, keep tenants happy and increase a property’s value.

“Tenants will certainly choose a home with an EPC of A, than one with an E,” he asserts. “The tenants who moved into the house love it and have no plans to move as we reduced gas bills from £2,500 to £900 a year, while the solar panels mean they don’t pay for electricity during the day.”


Tanner appreciates that it’s hard to justify spending a fortune on a lower cost house but insists simply replacing non-existent or poor loft insulation with a 40cm breathable material will improve an EPC with minimum effort and cost – and can be done by landlords themselves.

He suggests using natural insulation such as sheep wool that allows steam and moisture to escape, helping prevent condensation and mould. It’s also important to add ventilation and, by using passive air bricks containing natural fibres, this can stop cold air coming back in during the winter – and doesn’t cost much more than the standard version, says Tanner.

A new Labour government will doubtless reintroduce the target of an EPC band C for landlords, believes Tanner, but he expects it will be backed up by more financial incentives.

“EPCs are set to become more detailed next year and will become more expensive. In the meantime, it might be that you only need to get a few more points to raise your property from a band D to a C – indeed, if you’ve changed the boiler since the last report, it might already be a C without you having to do anything more.”

Read more about James Tanner.