After a major lobbying effort from the CLA, the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has announced an overhaul of energy efficiency targets for landlords, in the hope that pressure on the housing market might be eased.
The UK Government said that the Energy Performance Certificates - which measure the energy efficiency of buildings - is in need of 'fundamental reform'.
Country Land and Business Association President Mark Tufnell said:
“It is hugely important that we find ways to minimise the environmental impact of rural homes – many of which are very old and off the gas grid, with some even off the electricity grid. Meeting the government’s requirements of higher energy efficiency standards as previously set out, however, would have been physically impossible for many rural properties.
“The current proposals would see all new tenancies required to have an energy performance certificate (EPC) rating of C or above by 2025, which would have forced many landlords to spend at least £10,000 on works with no guarantee such investment would work.
“Keeping this unrealistic target would have considerable consequences for rural communities. A recent survey told us energy efficiency standards were the main reason why many landlords were selling or changing the use of some of their properties, causing untold damage to the supply of rural housing during a cost of living crisis.
“We are working constructively with the UK Government to explore how traditional rural homes can be heated more sustainably, and to reform EPCs so that the system works for all kinds of homes in the countryside.