Housing minister Christopher Pincher (pictured, above) has revealed plans to clamp down on landlords and letting agents who do not hold or display the minimum required EPC certificate when renting out a rented property.
Pincher says his housing ministry team is to to work with stakeholders within the private rented sector on how to better enforce EPC compliance, and also build on enforcement pilots that are already under way in partnership with local authorities.
His counterparts in the The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy have been busy too. They have been working with seven councils to test bottom-up, local authority-generated solutions to monitoring, compliance, and enforcement of the EPC regulations.
As we reported in February, this includes an initial scheme in Oxford, which BEIS is funding to increase EPC compliance.
Pincher’s comments were in answer to a parliamentary question from Liberal Democrat business spokesperson Sarah Olney (pictured).
She asked whether his department was working with local government to assess whether lettings agencies and landlords are compliant.
Landlords have been required to hold an EPC for their rental properties since 2008 but it is only recently that the government has begun to ratchet-up the legislative pressure.
Although they need only obtain a new EPC every ten years depending on the cost, complication or potential devaluation of the work needed, landlords for both new and existing tenancies must now hold an minimum ‘E’ certificate.
The government has said this will rise to a ‘C’ for existing tenancies in 2025 and for all tenancies by 2028. A consultation is under way on this and landlords can input into it.
But while this is all well documented, enforcement – as in all areas of the PRS – is less certain.
A survey by the i-newspaper in October via Freedom of Information requests found that just 6% of the 238 councils it canvassed had taken any enforcement action over EPCs.