NRLA Organisation On Energy Efficiency - Central Housing Group

NRLA Organisation Say Energy Efficiency Deadlines Must Be Pushed Back

Unrealistic Government proposals for energy efficiency improvements in PRS homes must be pushed back, says the NRLA Organisation.

The Government consulted on plans to ensure private rented homes have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of at least a C more than two years ago, with the proposed new rules set to be implemented in 2025 for new tenancies and 2028 for all others.

The Government also proposed all landlords should be expected to pay up to £10,000 per property to make the necessary improvements.

The NRLA Organisation had already approached ministers to argue delays meant there was now no way the sector could meet the target dates proposed. The association was also calling for a package of financial support to help landlords fund the work.

Energy Security and Net Zero Minister, Graham Stuart this week announced a ‘summary of responses’ from the consultation would be published by the end of this year, replying to a written question by former Housing Minister Alok Sharma asking when a response would be published.

This is not a formal consultation response, nor will it outline what approach landlords need to take, something the NRLA believes renders the proposed timescales unworkable. The association believes now is the time for the Government to go back to the drawing board to come up with sensible workable proposals, with the appropriate financial package behind them.

NRLA Organisation Chief Executive Ben Beadle said: “Landlords have been waiting for an announcement on Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards for two years, with these deadlines for compliance weighing heavily on their minds.

“The UK Government now has no choice but to scrap these dates which, with the best will in the world, are now completely unachievable. I raised this in our recent meeting with Secretary of State Michael Gove.

“The plans as they stand, also rely on the false assumption that landlords have unlimited sums of money with which to fund improvements.

“The proposals fail to accept the realities of different property and rental values across the country, and that the private rented sector contains some of the most difficult homes to retrofit.

“We would argue that now is the perfect time for the Government to go back to the drawing board and come up with a set of proposals that will work for both landlords and tenants and are backed by a robust financial support package, of the kind now being proposed by the Welsh Government. We would also like to see a definitive timetable produced to avoid landlords being left in limbo once again.” 

The Welsh Government has already confirmed that it will be prepared to look at financial support for landlords to improve the energy efficiency of the rented housing stock once new rules are laid out.

Responding to a report from the Senedd’s Climate Change Committee report on decarbonising the private housing sector it concluded: “If UK Government introduces a requirement to meet EPC C and does not provide financial support there could be a need to look at funding grants and/or loans to support improvements.”

It suggested that the potential funding required would range between £313 and £448 million.

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