Get in Touch

(RIBA 0-3)

Planning stage

(RIBA 4-5)

Design & construction

(RIBA 6-7)

Completion & post-completion

Our esg offering

Want to know how to prepare for the implementation of The Future Homes Standard in 2025? Access our latest webinar recording and slides containing all you need to know. Take me there!
fresh-guidance-issued-on-mees-upgrades-main-original
8 Minute Read • Regulatory Updates

Fresh guidance issued on MEES upgrades

Categories
Regulatory Updates
Regulatory Updates

Fresh guidance issued on MEES upgrades

fresh-guidance-issued-on-mees-upgrades-main-original.jpg?w=1024&h=683&scale

The regulation that forces landlords to upgrade some of the UK’s least energy efficient buildings is celebrating its first anniversary this month. The Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) bans new rental agreements or sales on privately owned buildings if the EPC rating falls into the two lowest categories (F and G). It was introduced by the Government to tackle fuel poverty and reduce carbon emissions by forcing renovations onto our existing housing stock.

If you own a building with a poor EPC, this means you will either need to renovate it or seek an exemption before new people can move in.

From April 2020 any rented dwelling in England and Wales will be covered by MEES; rental renewal or not.

In Energist’s world, MEES only applies when an old building that’s been newly renovated isn’t performing very well. We don’t deal with the existing housing stock, and buildings that comply with current regulations typically achieve B or C ratings.

Many landlords haven’t come across MEES before and those that have don’t seem to be too clear on the details. To help, the Government has published fresh guidance on whether upgrades are required or not.

The overarching rule still applies:

If it has an F or G rated EPC, and it’s about to be sold or rented out, improvements need to be investigated.

‘Improvements’ can vary from adding more insulation, changing the windows, replacing the heating system, changing light bulbs and adding renewable technology.

Owners can seek an exemption by doing some form-filling, but they need to read the recommendations on their EPC first and see if these suggested building improvements fall within the exemption list.

What falls under the exemption list?

  • If you’ve made all the recommended improvements and the building still doesn’t hit E.
  • If adding wall insulation is recommended, you’d need ‘written expert advice’ on why this could have a ‘negative impact on the fabric or structure of the property’.
  • If you cannot gain third party consent to complete the works. This could mean you need planning approval, or it could mean your current tenants won’t let builders in.
  • If you can show the recommended improvements would devalue the property by more than 5%
  • Residential only: Owners of dwellings can seek an exemption if the cheapest improvement is expected to cost more than £3,500.
  • Non-residential only: Non-residential owners can seek an exemption on any improvements if the payback time is more than seven years (cost of work vs expected saving in energy bills over seven years).

The requirements and exemption list may all sound a bit unnecessary today, especially when you consider just 6% of EPCs ever lodged are caught by MEES, but this is the first stepping stone.

We should expect this law to be upgraded in the coming years to include E rated buildings. That will impact one out of every five buildings in England and Wales.

 

You may also be interested in...

82E52B29B19347F3914730CF28C1C3A2

Future Homes Standard: Preparing for 2025 - Q&A Recap

Untitled-design-13

[WEBINAR RECAP] The Future Homes Standard – Preparing for 2025

Kc6LIB3ElSFVXcOs99f_1501602310438-Your_Questions_Answered_-_blue

The Future Homes Standard Webinar Recap: Your questions answered

Untitled-design-13

[WEBINAR] The Future Homes Standard Consultation: What do you need to know and what happens now?

FHS-3.png?w=1024&h=523&scale

The Future Homes Standard: Initial Headlines

Untitled-design-8.png?w=1024&h=1024&scale

Government publishes a Written Ministerial Statement following the Future Homes Standard consultation

    Got a question on an upcoming project?

    We can help! If you want to run something past us, ask that question you can’t find the answer to on google or maybe have a specific project in mind, then we can help. Fill in the below and we’ll be back in touch!

    Exit intent form