Listed buildings and EPCs – a huge headache for landlords

Sally Walmsley
Written by Sally Walmsley

New minimum EPC ratings are proving a huge headache for landlords of listed buildings.

As of April 2018 landlords must have a minimum energy performance rating of E on their Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) for new lets. The rule comes into force for existing tenancies in 2020.

After that it will be unlawful to rent a property which breaches the requirement for a minimum E rating, unless there is an applicable exemption.

With nearly a third of PRS homes built before 1919, making them some of the hardest properties to make efficient, this is a big enough problem for most landlords. But for those with listed homes it is proving a real nightmare.

Many believe that Listed properties do not need an EPC certificate. But when you actually read the EU regulations, which implement EU law this view may be wrong. It is not clear whether or not an EPC is needed for listed Buildings or not.

However, as a result of this long held belief, landlords were under the impression they would also be exempt from the new minimum energy performance requirements being introduced by the British Government.

It now appears this may not be the case. It is currently unclear whether there will be any exemptions available for the owners of listed Buildings, with the RLA currently liaising with the Country Landowner’s Association and campaigning for clarification on the issue.

Richard Jones, RLA company secretary said: “What everybody supposed was an exemption may not really be one.  We are therefore lobbying Government to explain the situation in unambiguous terms.

“It may be the case the Government wants owners of listed buildings to do whatever they can to improve energy efficiency to bring the property up to a minimum E rating –  so long as this does not adversely impact on the character of the building. Currently no-one seems to be in a position to tell us.

“We want clarification to be able to advise our members to make sure they are complying with the new rules and have time to do the necessary works if required – works which, due to the nature of the buildings, could be specialist and costly.”

To read more about EPC ratings and listed buildings click here.

About the author

Sally Walmsley

Sally Walmsley

Sally Walmsley is the Magazine and Digital Editor for the NRLA. With 20 years’ experience writing for regional and national newspapers and magazines she is responsible for editing our members' magazine 'Property', producing our articles for our news site, the weekly and monthly bulletins and editorial content for our media partners.

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