The UK Pulse found that 80 per cent of UK tenants are worried about the rising cost of their energy bills because their homes are hard to heat, yet only one in ten renters thought their landlord would make an energy efficiency upgrade without putting up their rent.
From 2018, the Government plans to restrict English and Welsh landlords from renting out their properties if they are not rated E or above on the official Energy Performance Certificate (EPC). However, there is no certainty about what grants will be available when the regulations take effect and landlords will only have to improve their homes to meet the standard where they can access grants to cover the full cost of upgrades, or if they can persuade tenants to contribute.
This week Labour pledged it will go further and introduce an additional target for 2027, requiring all privately rented properties to reach an EPC C band, and although we support all plans for regulating energy efficiency in the private rented sector there is currently no obligation for landlords to contribute to the costs of meeting these higher standards.
The bottom line is that landlords will have to contribute to the cost of these upgrades and, to make it easier, effective grants, funding and engagement programmes must be in place to encourage landlords improve the homes they rent out. Until then tenants will continue to bear the brunt of rising energy bills and cold, damp and mouldy homes.
If you’re feeling the chill and want to know how to save energy in the home click here for our top energy saving tips.
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