What are the rules?
Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) Regulations were introduced by the government in 2018. These regulations were introduced to:
Improve the quality of private rented buildings in England and Wales
Increase the energy efficiency of the worst performing houses and buildings
Improve the comfort and conditions in privately rented homes
Reduce fuel poverty.
Currently, privately rented properties must achieve an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of E at the minimum. This means landlords are not allowed to rent out a property with an EPC rating of F or G. This applies to new and existing tenancies.
You can find more guidance from the Government here MEES guidance for landlords.
The Government has committed to long term plans on the improvement of energy efficiency in privately rented homes and has recently consulted on improving energy performance in this sector.
One of the proposals is to raise the minimum EPC rating to C for new tenancies from 2025 and all tenancies from 2028.
This means MEES will be increasing, even if a property meets the current MEES it is likely in future years it will be insufficient. Therefore, landlords will be required to do more and more work in upcoming years to improve the energy efficiency of their properties. More about the Government's plans can be found here.
We're currently offering free support to landlords in Lewisham and Greenwich to better understand their MEES obligations, and access funding to install energy efficiency measures which can improve EPC scores. If you'd like to learn more about this, book a time for our advisor, Hojee, to give you a call.
What if a property doesn't meet the minimum standards?
The council is investigating any potential breaches of the MEES regulations and enforcement action will be considered against landlords that fail to bring their property up to the required standard.
Non-compliance with MEES can attract a financial penalty. Local Authorities can issue penalties of up to £30,000 when hazards such as excess cold are identified in a property. If you believe a property is being rented out that does not meet the regulations, you can let us know.
It is important to note that the EPC rating of a property cannot be considered in isolation.
Even if a property meets an EPC E rating, landlord are still responsible for providing adequate heating and thermal comfort.
Future Fit Homes is working alongside Lewisham and Greenwich councils to support landlords in improving their MEES.
Future Fit Homes is an initiative powered by South-East London Community Energy (SELCE), a non-profit co-operative formed in 2014 by a group of local volunteers who were concerned about the escalating pace of climate change and wanted to something about it in a local setting.
Future Fit Homes aims to empower the people of South-East London to improve the energy efficiency of their homes.
A number of energy advice services can support you to:
Reduce your carbon footprint
Increase the value of your property by improving your EPC rating
Make your home more climate-resilient
Make your home healthier, reducing illness from cold and damp
Benefit from potentially large energy bill savings