Regulation marches on despite the current Covid – 19 environment and the new Minimum Energy Efficiency regulations (MEES) came in force on 1st April 2020. In summary a landlord cannot let or continue to let private rented residential property including Assured and Rent Act tenancies where the current Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is a rating of F or G. Under the new MEES regulations such an EPC rating means the property is considered “substandard” .
Tenants are protected and can continue to occupy a property after 1st April 2020 if it falls into the category of substandard, but Landlords cannot engage in any new lettings after this date until they make the necessary improvements and secure a new EPC rating between A and E or apply for one of the very limited exceptions. These include diminution of value or prohibitive cost and these must be registered with supporting evidence on the Private Rented Sector Exemption Register.
The consequences for non-compliance by a landlord include financial penalties and reputational risk and the enforcement of the rules is by the Local Authority. It is unclear during these extraordinary times whether this will be a priority for Local Authorities but as ever compliance should be sought quickly if not already in place. Commercial property will be subject to the same rules on 1st April 2020. Should our Clients have any questions or concerns regarding MEES our Sandaire Real Estate team are more than happy to assist.