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Consultation open for Energy Performance upgrades in the Private Rented Sector

22nd December 2020

EPC committments in the private rented sector

There is currently a consultation open in regards to the government’s commitment to upgrade homes in the private rented sector (PRS) to have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) Band C by 2030, where it is practical, cost-effective and affordable.

The consultation is to set out some policy proposals in order to help achieve this commitment. The consultation hopes to bring significant benefits to landlords, tenants and the environment.

What are the targets set by the UK Government?

In June 2019 the UK government became the first major economy to legislate for net-zero greenhouse gas emissions. The target requires the UK to bring all greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050, compared to the previous target of at least an 80% reduction from 1990 levels. In addition to the net-zero targets, the UK has ambitious interim emission reduction targets, the Carbon Budgets, which require a 57% reduction in emissions across the UK economy by 2032.

How do we achieve these targets?

To achieve these targets, ambitious action in all sectors of the economy is required, including; Tackling emissions generated by our homes. To date, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from homes have reduced by 16% compared to 1990 levels. However, homes are still responsibl for 15% of UK greenhouse gas emissions (or around 22% including electricity consumption) at present.

What are the main proposals in the consultation?

  • Reducing energy bills and increased comfort for tenants and supporting delivery of our statutory fuel poverty target of EPC C by 2030
  • Potential property value improvements for landlords
  • Delivering carbon emission savings over Carbon Budgets 4 and 5, making progress towards our net zero target
  • Increase the quality, value and desirability of landlords’ assets;
  • Reduce energy bills for tenants and ensure warmer homes;
  • Support investment in high quality jobs and skills in the domestic retrofit supply chain
  • across England and Wales
  • Provide greater energy security through lower energy demand on the grid and 

Who does this apply to?

Landlords, tenants, local authorities and the supply chain (energy efficiency installers, Domestic Energy Assessors etc.); anyone affected by or concerned by raised energy performance standards in the domestic private rented sector or representing the interests of the sector

Why is there a consultation?

Homes are a key part of our national heritage and they define us as a society and reflect our culture, however a change in technologies means we need to meet new priorities. The UK houses are generally older than the rest of Europe and there is a potential for improvement. With the private rented sector representing over 20% of housing stock, it is important that we improve this for tenants.

When does the consultation close?

The consultation is open until the 8th January 2021.

What are the other policies that are working towards this goal?

The policy proposals set out in this consultation also link closely with other commitments which are:

• looking at incentives and levers that could encourage homeowners to invest in energy

  • efficiency improvements in line with the Clean Growth Strategy commitment to upgrade as many homes as possible to EPC C by 2035 where practical, cost-effective and affordable;

• social housing – we are developing proposals for a transformational £3.8bn Social

  • Housing Decarbonisation Fund which will improve the energy performance of social housing;

• fuel poverty – the proposed targets in the PRS can support existing fuel poverty goals; in addition, the funding options for the fuel poor can help improve standards in the PRS;

• the commitment to start to phase out high-carbon fossil fuel heating in off-gas-grid buildings in the 2020s;

• the Future Homes Standard, to be introduced by 2025, which will require new build homes to be future-proofed with low-carbon heating and world-leading levels of energy efficiency;

• the Heat and Buildings Strategy, to be published later this year, which will set out the immediate actions we will take for reducing emissions from buildings, including energy efficiency measures and low-carbon heating as part of an ambitious programme of work required to enable key strategic decisions on how we achieve the mass transition to low-carbon heat; and

• the government’s intention to consult on proposed changes to the energy efficiency and ventilation requirements of the Building Regulations relating to existing homes.

For more information and to take part in the consultation please visit: