BBC Investigation finds 6/10 UK rental homes fail to meet proposed new EPC standard

The findings of a recent BBC investigation act as a useful reminder of the ongoing consultation around Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs) and the very real impacts of the energy performance of rental properties on tenants and the environment, according to a real estate finance expert.

According to the BBC’s findings, six out of 10 UK rental homes fail to meet the proposed new standard for energy efficiency, with many tenants facing over-inflated energy bills as a result.

The UK Government is currently considering plans to require landlords to ensure all new rental properties carry an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of C from 2025, rather than the E-rating they currently need to have.

Andy Clutterbuck, Regional Head (Midlands and South) at Secure Trust Bank Real Estate Finance, believes the findings highlight the pressing need for landlords to start planning to make suitable energy efficiency improvements now, rather than waiting for the Government to prescribe stricter EPC rules for rental properties.

Andy said: “The recent energy crisis has really exposed the work that needs to be done to improve the energy efficiency of our rental housing stock – not only to do our bit for the environment, but to make living costs more affordable too. Although we’re expecting the Government to bring in tighter EPC requirements over the next two years or so, it is vital that landlords get ahead now to look after their tenants and avoid a sudden rush for labour and materials down the line.”

Last Autumn saw Secure Trust Bank Real Estate Finance launch its bespoke EPC Improvement Loan, designed specifically to help residential landlords fund energy saving investments for their properties. Available to the bank’s existing customers, the loan provides fixed sums of £6,500 and £13,000 for EPC D and EPC E rated assets respectively.

He continued: “As a specialist in property finance, we recognise the role we can play in helping landlords to upgrade their properties’ energy credentials. Unlike other forms of real estate finance, our EPC Improvement Loan is specifically for measures that will improve an EPC rating, which in turn allows landlords to offer their tenants more comfortable and affordable properties. We’re looking to help as many of our customers as possible to secure a loan now in order to start their remedial work imminently.”

For more information on Secure Trust Bank Real Estate Finance and its EPC Improvement Loan, click here.