Questions to ask your landlord about the energy efficiency (EPC rating) of your rental property

Whether you’re looking for a new property to rent, or are living in a rented property, making sure you are well informed about the energy efficiency rating should be a priority.

In April 2018 new legislations came in stating that all landlords must ensure their properties reach at least an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) rating of E or above before letting to new or existing tenants.

Knowing exactly what you should ask your current or potential landlord about the energy efficiency of the property may be confusing, so we have put together some of the top questions to ask:

Can I have a copy of the EPC Rating?

You are legally entitled to have a copy of the EPC rating if you ask for one. If your landlord is reluctant to let you look at theirs, then this should ring alarm bells.

The certificate is really insightful as it details:

  • All the areas in the home that could be improved
  • Recommendations on how to improve them
  • A chart showing the current EPC rating
  • Guidance on the potential EPC rating

You could use the EPC to negotiate with your landlord to either get a better rate, if the EPC is quite low, or try and get them to put measures in place to improve its energy efficiency. It is in their interest to improve its rating as it means their property will be more sought after and they can avoid potential fines.

At the same time, it will save you, the occupant, money on energy bills.

How well insulated is the property?

Insulation is one of the most efficient ways to retain energy in a property. Most of the heat lost is through the roof, as these tend not to insulated as well as they could be. When insulated properly, the home not only retains heat well, it also keeps cool in summer.

One of the quickest and easiest ways to save energy is by installing insulation around the boiler. This ensures minimal heat losses and greater efficiency in the boiler.

Is there a smart meter fitted?

Smart meters are a great way of determining how much energy you are using, how much it is costing you and which appliances are the most expensive to use.

Whilst having one fitted won’t necessarily save you money, it will allow you to assess exactly what you are using and adjust your routine at home accordingly. If the property isn’t efficient, you should be able to tell this from the charges on the smart meter display, as it will cost a lot more to heat your home in the winter, due to heat loss.

Smart meters also automatically send your meter readings to your energy supplier, meaning they consistently receive accurate readings of what your electricity and gas usage is, which in turn could reduce your bills.

Is the property double glazed?

Most properties are double glazed, but there are still many that aren’t. Double glazing is one of the most efficient ways to reduce heat loss and can save you a fortune in energy bills.

It is estimated that 10% of energy is lost through inefficient windows, so not only will they save you money on energy bills, they will also reduce your carbon footprint.

Reduce energy loss

If you suspect there is a lot of energy loss in your home, there are ways to determine where the issue lies. Methods such as air tightness testing locate whether there is any energy loss and if so, where it is coming from. Thermographic testing also determines any losses from a property, but looks at where heat is being lost.

Get in touch with us on 01403 253439 to find out more about how we can help you ensure your rental property’s energy efficiency is up to scratch, whether you are a tenant or a landlord.

Posted in Energy, EPC's.