My Property Box

My Property Box Boss Calls On Michael Gove To Reform EPC Standards to Avoid Rented Sector Exodus


The managing director of the estate agency group My Property Box is urging Michael Gove to implement an “equitable, realistic, and workable” reform of the energy efficiency rating covering privately rented homes.

Ben Quaintrell has written to the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, warning that the constraints of the current Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) – combined with Government measures forcing landlords to meet increased ratings – will take a devastating toll on the rented sector.

Under its drive to achieve net zero, it will require landlords of an estimated 2.4m privately rented homes to improve standards from the current EPC band of E to C by 2028.

Critics describe it as punitive and argue landlords could face huge bills or fines of up to £30,000 and a ban on renting out properties if they fail to comply. It is reported that the Government is considering increasing the minimum landlord spending cap for energy-efficient measures from £3,500 to £10,000.

Ben Quaintrell said that the additional red tape, expense and uncertainty could drive even more landlords from the rented sector at a time when rents are already rising as demand continues to outstrip supply.

He said: “The Government should not place the onus on improving the energy efficiency of the country’s ageing housing stock on landlords when so many of its previous initiatives, such as the Green Homes Grant, were an abject failure.

“The majority of Britain’s housing stock was built before 1919 and so will cost huge amounts to raise their EPCs compared to more modern homes. For example, many terraced homes were built with single brick walls while others don’t have the required cavity width for cavity wall insulation.

“I’m aware of developers who are walking away from renovating older properties because the cost of energy efficiency measures together with construction materials makes it prohibitive.

“I urge Michael Gove to reform the EPC system in an equitable, realistic, and workable manner which recognises the huge variety in the age and construction methods, together with the rental value, and estimated cost of retrofitting properties.

“Otherwise, it is simply impractical to bring many up to an EPC C rating and there will be an exodus of investors from the rented sector, which could have dire consequences for tenants, most notably a dramatic fall in available housing at a time when the building of new housing stock is still failing to meet government targets.

“There is no doubt this country needs to improve the energy efficiency of its homes, but it needs a government-led investment strategy which takes place over a more sensible period, and the push to net-zero should not be at the detriment of landlords who provide such a vital service.”



Photo caption: Ben Quaintrell, managing director of My Property Box

MEDIA CONTACT: Andrew Douglas on 01325 363 436

Notes to editors

My Property Box covers the North East and North Yorkshire and offers a full end-to-end property service including advice on – lettings, sales, property management and investment. It prides itself on delivering an unparalleled service, whether you are an investor, landlord, vendor, or buyer.

It’s a tried and trusted client-focused business built upon innovation. This has allowed it to implement a range of streamlined systems and procedures that make our clients’ lives easier.

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Ben Quaintrell, managing director of My Property Box
Ben Quaintrell, managing director of My Property Box
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