A national awareness campaign is required to help landlords get to grip with new Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) legislation, according to property expert Kate Faulkner.
Making the claim in a report on the topic commissioned by the TDS Charitable Foundation, Kate calls for the government, industry and media to work together to educate landlords on their EPC responsibilities.
Kate, who runs Propertychecklists.com and consultancy Designs on Property, also focused on tenants in the report, advocating for clear information and straightforward practical guidance.
The report, titled Communicating new EPC rules to landlords and tenants, is the 12th and final instalment in a series funded by the TDS Charitable Foundation, designed to raise standards and educate the private rented sector (PRS).
Kate said: “Despite a flurry of publicity and interest before the EPC regulations came into force, many landlords and letting agents are still unaware of the law.
“The new rules and their aim to increase the energy efficiency of rental properties is undoubtedly positive, but for some landlords, their introduction has been seen as another legal hoop they have to jump through.
“Clearer explanations of what is required of landlords, and what energy-saving changes they can adopt to make their properties as energy efficient as possible, would certainly go a long way to help landlords to understand and comply with EPC regulations.
“As well as complying with legal requirements, landlords can use the energy efficiency of their property, as a marketing tool to stand out from the crowded rental market.
“Landlords who don’t comply with the regulations may face penalties of up to £5,000, so it pays to understand your legal responsibilities. That said, more could be done to simply and concisely communicate what practical steps will help landlords make the necessary changes, and for tenants to identify properties with compliant EPC ratings.”
The TDS Charitable Foundation awards funding to organisations that meet the Foundation’s aims of promoting knowledge of landlords’ obligations and tenants’ rights & responsibilities.
Since it was founded in 2014, the TDS Charitable Foundation has awarded hundreds of thousands of pounds to organisations across England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The Foundation is funded by donations from The Dispute Service (TDS), the leading Tenancy Deposit Protection scheme which operates on a not-for-profit basis across the UK.
While the TDS Charitable Foundation funds the reports, Kate retains editorial control and the opinions expressed in the report do not necessarily reflect the views of TDS or the TDS Charitable Foundation.