Commercial property landlords warned over changes to energy regulations
Commercial landlords are being warned to act now to ensure properties meet proposed standards set out in new energy regulations.
The measures, which should come into effect from April 2018, prohibit the granting of new tenancies or renewing of tenancies on buildings that do not meet at least an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of ‘E’.
An EPC provides information about the costs of heating and lighting, as well as showing what measures can be taken to improve a property’s energy efficiency rating. This ranges from ‘A’, the most efficient, to ‘G’, the least efficient.
Under rules originally set out in the Energy Bill 2011, landlords who fail to take appropriate action could face a fine, although some exemptions may apply.
Don’t get caught out
It is vital for owners and occupiers to assess their properties and make necessary changes in time.
It’s estimated that around 18 per cent of all commercial properties could fall under the required ‘E’ rating, while another 20 per cent fall within the ‘E’ bracket.
After April 2018, these properties may become unmarketable unless some upgrades take place. It is better to be forewarned now rather than risk losing out financially when the regulations come into force.
The rules also apply to domestic rental properties and the legislation has been designed to help the Government meet its target to cut carbon emissions.
A qualified assessor can advise you what the next steps are for your commercial property.
Energy efficiency improvements can be made with some quick and simple solutions that won’t cause disruption, will help you to avoid costly penalties and will also have the added benefit of saving money on energy bills too.
Any commercial landlords currently thinking about making improvements to energy efficiency to carefully consider insulation.
Invest in high quality insulating materials such as spray foam insulation. This can prevent up to 95 per cent of heat loss, therefore cutting down on energy bills. It is suitable for many types of commercial property including offices, workshops and shop units.
Spray foam expands to fill the smallest of gaps when it is applied, then sets solidly. This forms an airtight, protective seal with no shrinkage over time which is an issue with inferior insulating materials.
However, time is running out to make changes so any landlord – whether renting out a domestic or non-domestic property – needs to take action sooner rather than later.