Landlords of the draughtiest properties – that is those with the worst Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) ratings of F or G – have been required since April to make the required improvements on their properties in order to upgrade them to band E before they can put them on the rental market.
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The government had previously proposed exempting homes where insulation and other upgrades would cost more than £2,500, but this cap has now been raised to £3,500, meaning fewer properties will be exempt.
The new regulations will affect 290,000 properties in England and Wales, accounting for 6% of the market, according to the Department for Business and Energy.
Government figures put the average cost of upgrading a property to an EPC rating of E at £1,200 while these improvements will save tenants an average of £180 a year on energy bills.
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Landlords can use support from the Energy Company Obligation scheme and local grants to fund improvements on their properties.
Energy and clean growth minister, Claire Perry, said: “While the vast majority of landlords take great pride in the properties they own, a minority still rent out housing that is difficult to keep warm.
“Upgrading these homes so they are more energy efficient is one of the most effective ways to tackle fuel poverty and help bring down bills for their tenants, saving them £180 a year.
“Everyone should be protected against the cold in their own home and today’s announcement will bring this reality closer.”
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