In short the answer is NO.
In England and Wales, regulations which are due to come into force on 1 April 2018 will potentially affect the ability to let out properties and the market value (and marketability) of those properties. The regulations will prevent private Landlords from letting either residential or commercial properties with an Energy Performance Asset Rating (EPAR) lower than E (unless they can point to a specific exemption).
The equivalent regulations for buildings in Scotland do not impose a minimum EPC rating requirement but other measures apply that are already in force for commercial properties.
Landlords, investors, developers and lenders should take note of the differences and not assume energy efficiency policies are the same throughout the UK.
*Non Domestic EPC Register for England and Wales
*EPC Register for Scotland
Registers can be searched using the property’s postcode so the easiest way to determine whether or not a valid EPC exists for your property is to check online: Non Domestic EPC Register for England and Wales or EPC Register for Scotland.
If you have any queries regarding energy efficiency requirements for properties, please get in touch with your usual contact in the Property team at Blackadders.
I welcome the recent report from RICS calling on the Government to introduce measures to encourage the housing market. The report advises that for every £1 spent on construction there is a contribution of £2.84 towards economic activity. It also advised that the construction industry employs around 900,000 people. RICS has laid out plans very similar to my own to stimulate the new build market, in particular, cutting VAT on the refurbishment of homes, changes to the tax system to encourage residential property investment and reinstating empty commercial property relief.
Mark Goodwin from RICS comments: “With house building at a desperate level, it is essential that the Government takes steps to attract investment into the residential sector”.
I would urge the Chancellor to take active steps in his Budget to stimulate the housing market.
Head of Property Services