A concerning new report has revealed that almost one-third of UK tenants have recently paid for energy efficiency improvements to their home. This is despite Government legislation that permits buy-to-let landlords to fund these alterations.
Presently, landlords are legally required to bring their property up to a minimum Energy Performance Certificate rating of E.
Under legislation that came into effect on April 1st 2016, should a tenant currently living in properties with a F or G EPC rating request improvements, it is the landlords’ prerogative to comply. Failure to do so could see them face a severe penalty notice or their landlord insurance being void.
Failures and wishes
Despite this, a study conducted by online letting agent PropertyLetByUs reveals that a number of tenants are still footing the bill for energy efficiency improvements. Over 15% of tenants questioned said they had paid for roof insulation, with 7% funding their own double-glazing.
92% said they had paid for draft excluders, where 71% said they had self-funded a boiler repair.
88% of tenants questioned said they wished that their landlord would install a more fuel-efficient boiler. 78% said they wanted a draughty door changing, while 48% wish for double-glazed windows.
Properties with EPC ratings of F and G are to be banned from the rental market, beginning with new tenancies. Only homes with an EPC rating of E will be permitted to rent out to new tenants from 2018.
The Government has suggested that it could cost landlords between £1,800 and £5,000 to bring insufficient properties up to the required standard.
A PropertyLetByUs spokesperson said, ‘our research shows that is falling on tenants to pay for energy improvements to their rented properties which is simply unacceptable. Many tenants are finding that their landlords are refusing to make improvements to the property, leaving tenants no choice but to dip into their own pockets.’
‘Tenants should not have to pay for roof insulation and repairs to old boilers, when it is the landlord’s responsibility. Landlords should comply with the current legislation that requires them to make energy efficiency improvements and they also should start improving their properties, if they have an EPC rating of F or G, so they are brought up to the required standard by 2018.’