How new energy efficiency standards could affect listed and heritage properties

New energy efficiency standards are leaving owners of listed and heritage properties confused. What exactly does it mean for those hoping to rent out their property?

From 1st April 2018, privately rented properties must meet new energy efficiency standards (MEES), or landlords will be unable to rent out their properties to tenants. There are hefty fines for non-compliance, such as civil penalties up to £4000 for those without a valid EPC (Energy Performance Certificate.) However, the CLA (Countryside Landowners Association) have stated that the achievement of an E certification is unrealistic for old homeowners.

The CLA has been seeking clarification on the behalf of landlords as to the status of listed buildings in these new regulations. Listed and heritage buildings are exempt whilst simultaneously requiring an EPC as proof that introducing energy efficient methods would damage the property’s character or appearance. This has led to confusion by landlords as to whether listed and heritage buildings need to comply or not.

After two years delay, The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has offered only the vague response to concerns that owners of heritage properties make their own decision about whether they require an EPC, or to ask the assistance of Trading Standards.

The CLA claims that this is not a good enough response by ministers and will lead to endless confusion and wasted funds by listed and heritage homeowners. Furthermore, it could lead to the damage of these timeless properties through unsuitable energy saving methods and installations.

Heritage properties are at the heart of what we cover at Alan & Thomas Insurance Group, so we have a vested interest in preserving their wellbeing. Contact us for more information about insurance for your heritage based business or industry at 01202 754900.