This time last year, the Landlord Advice Team fully expected to be spending a large portion of the year fielding questions relating to energy efficiency improvements.
This was because from April 2016, landlords have been expected to consent to requests from tenants for energy efficiency improvements, but only where the landlord does not have to pay for it themselves.
This is leading up to another piece of legislation, which states that from 2018 landlords will no longer be able to rent to new tenants if their property is rated an F or G for energy performance.
When this law came in, the Green Deal Fund was still being funded by the Government. But then the funding for Green Deal Finance was cut and the calls never materialised.
Despite this the 2018 legislation is still coming and this week the team received a call from one of our landlords who had confused both the pieces of legislation.
The landlord had been approached by one of his tenants of a number of years who had requested a wide range of energy efficiency improvements as the property was an F rating. The tenant had informed the landlord that he had no choice but to bring the property up to an E rating immediately as the legislation had come in from April 2016.
The landlord phoned us worried that the tenant’s requests would cost thousands and without the Green Deal or similar financing they could never afford that in their current circumstances.
We advised the landlord the tenant was mistaken and that he was well within his rights to reject the requests because of the lack of funding.
In addition, we also told him that the requirements to have at least an E rating for energy performance only applied to new tenancies from 2018. In the case of this tenant, the requirements to improve the property’s energy efficiency standards would only apply from 2020.
We did however warn the landlord that he should start saving. The Government currently suggests that landlords will be expected to pay up to £5,000 to bring the property up to standard in 2018 and Green Deal Funding is very unlikely to be replaced.