Published by Sarah Ashcroft
The arrival of the Green Deal has sparked a surge in interest in energy-efficient home improvements - and landlords have been advised they should get to the front of the queue.
According to the results of the English Housing Survey, some 11.4 per cent of properties in the private rented sector are rated only F or G for energy efficiency, reports the Daily Telegraph. In the local authority homes market, the figure is just two per cent, indicating rented properties are not always the best performers when it comes to meeting the latest green guidelines.
It is now believed that one in ten buy-to-let properties will be unsuitable for rent in just five years' time, should landlords fail to act. The good news is that the creation of the Green Deal gives them the perfect opportunity to have eco-friendly advances made on their homes, with no pressure to find the funds in one go or face huge repayments.
"The government has made it clear that there will be consequences for those who do not voluntarily improve the energy efficiency of their properties by a specific time, so there is no excuse not to comply with the cost-neutral scheme," the National Landlords Association has stated.
One of the major problem areas is insulation, as figures show just 38 per cent of privately rented properties have cavity wall insulation. In owner-occupied abodes, this figure is 57 per cent, indicating owners are more likely to take measures to improve their building's energy efficiency.
An overhaul of the insulation within a home could be just one of the ideas landlords have for their properties in order to enhance their eco-friendliness and ensure they are not left effectively redundant in just a few years.
But that is not to say insulation is the only course of action well worth taking in rented properties. Other options include fitting solar panels to the roof, installing ground source heat pumps and investing in low-energy lighting and heating systems.
Lawpack is launching revised tenancy agreements including provisions for Green Deal improvements by landlords early in March 2013.
Published on: February 25, 2013