From April 2018 changes to the Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rules will come in meaning all private rented homes must have a minimum EPC rating of E or it will be illegal for a landlord to rent them out.

The rule will only apply to new tenancies and renewals to start off with but will be extended to cover all existing tenancies by 2020.

This means any homes rated F or G must be improved or taken off the rental market.  It is estimated that around 330,000 private rented homes in the UK are currently rated F and G.

If you have not done so already we would advise that you check all of the current EPCs on your properties.  If you have not got your original document you can download a copy at using the property postcode.

If the EPC rate is lower than an E you should start to plan in the works required to improve the rating to E or above as soon as possible.  The EPC should give a list of recommendations which would make a good starting point.

The government will be publishing specific guidance for landlords in October to clarify the new rules and their obligations.

Listed buildings will be exempt, on condition that landlords have done as much as they are permitted to, to make them energy efficient. If your property is listed you will need to register it online to receive your exemption