The Green Deal Scheme officially launched on 1 October this year is designed to limit emissions from domestic and non-domestic properties by 2020 so as to comply with EU CO2 targets. Enforcement regulations state that by 2018 landlords will not be able to rent out domestic properties unless an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of "E" has been reached. EPC's are required on all domestic lets made since 2008.
After months of lobbying by the CLA and other trade associations and charities representing owners of older properties, the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC), has recognized that the Energy Performance Certificate does not adequately rate the energy efficiency of older properties. A new circulation by DECC officials seeks to identify pre-1919 properties – often farmhouses and farm cottages – so that Green Deal Assessors can:
"recommend that the consumer seek specialist advice on the measures for the property before signing up to any installation"
Fear expressed by the CLA and other bodies has been that under the government's flagship Green Deal scheme, wrongly rated properties would be damaged by inappropriate Green Deal installations – possibly increasing condensation and damp and mould growth as a result. Recognition by DECC that specialist advice is needed is a positive step forward that should mitigate against costly refurbishment mistakes in older housing stock.