Landlords urge Government to extend minimum energy efficiency standards deadline

The National Landlords Association (NLA) has urged the government to exert extreme care when introducing the minimum energy efficiency requirements to the private rented sector (PRS), sources close to the matter can reveal.

The group has also asked for an extension to the deadline for rented properties to reach minimum energy efficiency standards after the difficulties in introducing Green Deal finance into the sector.

NLA Chief Executive Officer Richard Lambert said: “The Government set an original implementation date of 1 April 2018 for all private rented properties in the expectation that Green Deal finance would be available from autumn 2012, and that it would be supported by ECO subsidy.

“As it turned out, Green Deal loans were inaccessible to private landlords until April 2014, by which time the restructured ECO was by and large unavailable to the sector.

“The Green Deal Home Improvement Fund proved to be an inadequate replacement, with all the funding for the 2014-15 financial year apparently allocated within seven weeks, and the prospects for future funding are now highly uncertain.

“This means that landlords have already effectively lost almost two years’ time to act and there is likely to be a hiatus in Green Deal applications until the future of the Government incentives has been clarified.”

“Setting the backstop date by which all tenancies must meet the minimum requirements at April 2020 is too soon. Given the difficulties associated with the funding, which look likely to persist, we believe that it would be sensible instead to review actual progress in 2020 and to set a new ‘working’ provisional date of April 2023.

Implementing extensive energy-saving measures is likely to help home owners reduce their overall bills and also their overall debts to energy suppliers.

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