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A quarter of landlords seek higher-rated EPC properties as Government proposals impact purchase decisions

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Proposed tougher energy efficiency requirements for rental properties are already influencing landlords’ buying decisions, with a quarter acquiring higher-rated properties, research from Paragon Bank has found.

Paragon’s research of over 1,200 landlords found that 15% have purchased property with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of between A and C in anticipation of the tougher requirements, with a further 10% acquiring D-rated property with a view to upgrading.

Under Government proposals, new rental tenancies will require a minimum EPC of C by April 2025, with all tenancies meeting that standard by 2028. However, it is over two years since the proposals were made and Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has recently hinted that the implementation will be delayed.

The specialist lender’s research has highlighted the proposals are influencing landlords’ business strategies more broadly, with just under six in 10 (59%) having taken some form of action as a result.

In addition to acquiring A-C property, one in five (19%) landlords have already made improvements to bring a property’s EPC rating up to C or above. A similar proportion, 14%, indicated that they are currently in the process of retrofitting their properties with energy-saving measures in order to increase the EPC rating to C or above.

The proposals have resulted in a level of divestment, albeit to a lower degree, with less than one in 10 (9%) landlords advising that they have sold property that would be too expensive to upgrade to meet the proposed new standards and 7% selling homes unable to reach EPC C or above.

Landlords were also asked how EPC ratings would influence future property purchase decisions. Six in 10 (61%) said that they would target properties that fall into EPC bands A–C, 18% would purchase properties rated EPC D or E, with the intention of upgrading them and 2% would do this with the least energy efficient properties EPC rated F and G. The remaining 19% said that EPC ratings would not impact their future decision making.

Louisa Sedgwick, Commercial Director at Paragon Bank said: “Michael Gove’s recent comments mean it’s looking increasingly likely that any new PRS energy efficiency standards will be delayed. Nevertheless, it’s encouraging to see landlords are already building on the progress made over the last decade in making privately rented homes more sustainable.

“Most commonly, this has been through buying homes that already meet the new standards proposed by the Government, incentivised by green mortgage products. But, with a significant proportion of landlords already making upgrades to improve the energy efficiency of the properties they already own, or planning to do so in future, we see a need for financial support as well as education on what can be a complex and costly undertaking, something that presents huge opportunities for the sector.”

For media enquiries contact:

Jordan Lott
Media Relations Manager
Paragon Bank
[email protected]


Notes to editors:

Paragon lends to private individuals and limited companies and provides mortgages suitable for single, self-contained properties, as well as HMOs and multi-unit blocks. Paragon can accommodate higher aggregate lending limits and more complex letting arrangements including local authority leases and corporate leases along with standard ASTs.

Paragon Bank PLC a subsidiary of the Paragon Banking Group PLC which is a FTSE 250 company based in Solihull in the West Midlands. Established in 1985, Paragon Banking Group PLC has over £14 billion of assets under management, helping more than 340,000 customers to achieve their ambitions.