As we have now entered into April, the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards ('the Mees') have been brought into force by way of The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015 (SI 2015/962).
The broad effect of these regulations is that it is now unlawful for a landlord to let residential or commercial premises which do not meet the new minimum efficiency standard of E on a valid EPC. It will also become unlawful after April 2020 for landlords of residential buildings, or after April 2023 for landlords of commercial buildings, to continue to let a building which does not rate E or above, i.e. if the lease of a non-compliant building is already in place and expires after these dates. A lease of a non-compliant building will not be invalid but the landlord who is in breach of the MEES will become liable for a civil penalty.
There has been no change to buildings which are not required to have an EPC but for those which do require one, the restrictions mean that a landlord may need to carry out works to improve the energy efficiency of the building in order to avoid falling foul of the MEES. The penalty that a landlord can be hit with is a fine of up to £5,000 for residential buildings or up to £150,000 for commercial buildings. There are certain exemptions to the new restrictions, but in order to ensure the benefit of any exemption, this must be registered so it is important to seek advice if you are unsure.
At Gepp & Sons we have a fully serviced Commercial Property Department who can advise you and your business on legal matters relating to commercial property. For further advice please contact Keri Constantatou or Charlotte Strutt on either 01245 228136 or firstname.lastname@example.org
This is not legal advice; it is intended to provide information of general interest about current legal issues.