As from now, April 1st 2018, the Government is clamping down on commercial buildings that are not compliant with the new energy efficiency standards. This means that as a commercial property owner, it’s essential to improve the sustainability of your portfolios now, if you haven’t already.
Details of the new energy efficiency standards should have been issued to you last year, along with a warning that failure to comply could lead to financial penalties and reputational damage.
Energy efficiency and being environmentally aware are hot topics these days. So, how can Focus Micro Systems help? Our products, such as the OFFICE software developed specifically for the commercial property market, will help you to keep records on when upgrades – such as new insulation or energy efficient boilers – have been carried out on each individual property.
In fact, OFFICE saves you up to 80% administration time. For instance, you can contact tradesmen and clients to arrange for works to be carried out with just one click, helping you to get your properties more sustainable in less time.
What the changes mean for landlords
The new regulations stipulate that privately rented non-domestic properties in England and Wales will need to meet a minimum energy efficiency level by 1st April 2018 for them to be let.
With the A to G scale for non-domestic EPCs (Energy Performance Certificate), buildings must now achieve a rating of at least band ‘E’ to be let. Which means that if any of your properties are rated ‘F’ or ‘G’, you cannot agree fresh tenancies with new or existing tenants as from April.
And from 2023 onwards, landlords won’t be able to let a property under an existing rolling agreement unless it has an ‘E’ rating either.
Be aware that local weights and measures authorities will have the power to hand penalty notices to landlords who fail to comply with the higher standards. If this happens to you, your name may even be made public.
On the other hand, you may be eligible for an exemption. For instance, the consents needed to proceed with large-scale changes, such as from a mortgagee or a superior landlord, may not be granted. Or if your buildings are listed, then building consent may not be allowed.
It’s understandable that you may have some concerns about the financial side of the new sustainability standards. After all, the costs associated with things like innovative heating systems and insulation could quickly add up. You’ll need to carefully assess how to pay for any required improvements, which might mean reduced spending in other areas of your business. Or shop around for an appropriate grant or loan.
Why does energy efficiency matter?
We are increasingly aware of the pollution happening to our beautiful blue planet. Not just plastics in the seas damaging and killing the marine wildlife, but the pollutants we continue to pump into the atmosphere.
It’s time to make a difference. In fact, it’s long overdue. Which is why the Government is putting these new energy efficiency regulations in place.
Energy efficient buildings can offer environmental advantages by lowering carbon emissions and cutting waste. Measures such as insulation, double-glazing, renewables and eco-friendly boilers can deliver a financial boost. Tenants will benefit from savings on their energy bills. And as a landlord, your reputation within the market could be enhanced.
Better still, this increased marketability could also mean reduced void periods.
Let Focus Micro Systems help you become more sustainable
To book a live demonstration of OFFICE or any of our property software systems, get in touch or give us a ring on 0871 250 0021 and ask to speak to Duncan Samuel or Callum Samuel today.
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