Minimum energy efficiency standard regulations for domestic and non-domestic buildings
The Climate Change Act 2008 legally bound the government to reduce the annual greenhouse gas emissions by 34% by 2020 and 80% by 2050, against a 1990 baseline. The December 2011 Carbon Plan highlighted that 38% of emissions in the UK come from buildings and the government aims to reduce these emissions to close to zero by the year 2050.
The Energy Act 2011 placed a duty on the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change to bring into force regulations that would improve the energy efficiency of buildings in the domestic and non-domestic private rented sector in England and Wales.
On 5 February 2015 the Government published a response to a consultation on the private rented sector minimum energy efficiency standard regulations for domestic and non-domestic buildings in England and Wales. The consultation ran from 22 July 2014 to 2 September 2014 and engaged with a range of stakeholders, including landlords, tenants, environmental groups and property organisations.
They propose that the regulations will:
- Require landlords to improve the energy efficiency of domestic properties to at least band ‘E’ Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating by 2018 otherwise they will not be able to lease the property to new or renewing tenants.
- The new rules will be extended to cover all domestic leases by the year 2020 and all non-domestic leases by 2023.
- Residential tenants will have the right to request consent for necessary improvement works to properties they are already occupying from 1 April 2016. The improvements must not entail upfront costs to the landlords, which would mean that improvements might be funded through the Green Deal or Energy Company Obligation (ECO). Landlords will not be able to unreasonably withhold consent. The First-tier Tribunal General Regulatory Chamber will hear and determine applications from tenants where the tenant considers that the landlord has not complied with the regulations.
- Some property types will be exempt, for example listed buildings.
The regulations will be enforced by local authorities, who will be able to issue penalties for not complying with the regulations. Renting out a non-compliant property might incur a penalty of up to £4,000 for domestic properties and up to £150,000 for non-domestic properties.
Amber Rudd MP said, “improving the energy efficiency...will enhance the quality of living and cut the energy bills for the millions of people who rent their homes”.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Climate change act.
- Display energy certificate.
- Energy company obligation.
- Energy efficiency regulations: The challenges for landlords.
- Energy performance certificate.
- Green deal.
- Ground rent.
- Minimum energy efficiency standard (MEES).
- Peppercorn rent.
- Rent free period.
- Rent in administration.
- Rent review.
- Rent to buy.
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