Since the Government announced the new minimum EPC requirements, landlords have received very few updates or guidance on meeting the deadline. Now, there are rumours of a substantial extension, which would be great news for the buy to let sector.
There is speculation that we could soon see the Government significantly postpone the proposed EPC requirements, according to a source close to The Telegraph.
Currently, the EPC minimum requirements state that all new tenancies must have a rating of C or above by 2025, extending to all existing tenancies by 2028. The announcement came as part of the Government’s wider target for the UK to hit net zero by 2050. Although, it’s important to note that this was never fully legislated, leaving many in the sector unsure whether to make improvements or not.
However, there are now rumours that the Government intend to extend the deadline of 2025 for all new tenancies to 2028. It’s predicted that the target for all existing tenancies will remain at 2028 and that the Government will merge the two together.
This would come as a huge relief to the buy to let sector. Having had no real guidance since the announcement, many landlords are growing increasingly concerned over the feasibility of meeting the requirements by the 2025 deadline.
According to The Telegraph, an estimated 3,500 properties would need to be upgraded each day to meet the 2025 deadline. For portfolio landlords, in particular, this expectation is both impractical and unrealistic.
One of the main concerns for property investors is the costs associated with this legislative change. Research from specialist buy to let lender Paragon revealed the average cost to upgrade a property to EPC C is £10,560, despite the Government’s rumoured cap of £10,000. The study also revealed that 77% of landlords are willing to spend up to £3,000.
If landlords fail to meet the deadline of 2028, they could face a fine of up to £30,000. Should the Government extend the deadline, it's essential that proper guidance and support are readily available for landlords if they are to realistically meet the new targets. The announcement would return some peace of mind for landlords, but it’s vital the correct measures are put in place this time around, so we don’t find ourselves in the same situation in a few years’ time.
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Worried about the cost of EPC improvements? Read our article on Funding Buy to Let EPC Improvements to find out how we can help.
31st March 2023