As of the 1st October 2008 ALL properties in the social and private rented sector in England and Wales will be legally required, to present an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) to new tenants, warns the National Approved Letting Scheme (NALS).
In a recent study, the Government discovered that domestic energy accounts for 27% of the UK’s ENTIRE carbon dioxide emissions and with the requirement set down by Article 7 of the Energy Performance for Buildings Directive (2002/91/EC) Energy Performance Certificates will be a mandatory requirement.
Environmental concern and the implementation of energy saving measures are fast-growing in importance, especially in the property sector. There are, however, a few simple, yet effective ways, Landlords can ensure their properties are energy efficient ahead of arranging an EPC. These range from correctly insulating properties; using cavity wall insulation and loft insulation, which is efficient and is a cost effective way of storing energy. Double glazing will also reduce noise pollution and lower overall heating costs, as will replacing a boiler of 15 years or older.
Caroline Pickering, Chair of NALS advises that certification will actually help landlords attract tenants:
“An EPC provides the tenant with a clear indication of the energy efficiency of their accommodation which can only be a selling point for prospective tenants. It is a “win-win” situation for tenants, landlords and lettings agents.”
“Leaving your assessment until the last minute could cause unnecessary lengthy hold-ups, especially if everyone else does the same” warns Pickering, “but by contacting a local Domestic Energy Assessor (DEA) ahead of the deadline in October will ensure that your property is fully compliant and will reduce the risk of having to join a waiting list and most importantly will put you ahead of the competition!”
An accredited DEA will carry out an inspection of the property and produce a certificate which is valid for 10 years, costs vary, however for further advice speak to your local NALS agent who may be able to carry out the service for you.
For more information, or to request a FREE advisory leaflet for landlords please contact your local NALS agent.
visit www.energysavingtrust.org.uk or call the Energy Performance Certificate Helpline on 0845 365 2468.
NALS is backed by the Government and the professional bodies in the lettings sector. NALS offers a reliable benchmark for landlords and tenants to compare the standards of service they receive from residential letting agents. All accredited firms commit to providing clearly defined levels of customer service, have client money protection cover, maintain professional indemnity insurance and operate a customer complaints procedure. For more information visit www.nalscheme.co.uk
The National Letting Scheme Board comprises:
Caroline Pickering (Chair), representatives from Communities and Local Government (CLG), British Property Federation, Sanctuary Shaftesbury Housing, the National Landlords Association, the National Union of Students, the Guild of Letting and Management, ARLA, NAEA and RICS