MEES : Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards
From April 2016, The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015 brought into force minimum energy efficiency standards (MEES) in the residential and commercial private rented sector.
Essentially Landlords with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) Rating below an E are required to undertake work to improve the energy performance of the property; those who do not could face heavy penalties. Key dates below underline when the regulations will be enforced, with the regulation scope expanding over a five year period.
1 April 2016
ALL domestic tenants have the right to request energy efficiency improvements to their properties. This applies to domestic properties let under longer term assured and regulated tenancies. Landlords will be unable to refuse consent to a tenants request to make energy efficiency improvements.
1 April 2018
It will be unlawful to grant new leases or renew leases already in place of residential or commercial property with an EPC rating below an ‘E’.
1 April 2020
The regulation will expand to apply to ALL residential privately rented property which are required to have an EPC.
1 April 2023
This will be extended to include ALL existing commercial leases.
FAQs : Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards in the Non-Domestic Private Rental Sector
What are the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards?
From April 2018 changes to legislation will make it unlawful to agree a new lease for a commercial property with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of F or G.
Who will MEES apply to?
New lettings and lease renewals on or after the 1 April 2018, the landlord/property owner will need to ensure that the property meets MEES before the lease is granted. However as of 1 April 2023 all privately rented property will be required to meet MEES.
Who will MEES not apply to?
Properties that do not require an EPC under current regulations will not be required to meet MEES. MEES does not apply to short lettings (6 months or less) and lettings over 99 years or more.
Are there any penalties for non-compliance? Financial penalties for non-compliance are linked to the rateable value of the property, but could be as much as £150,000.
What are the key dates?
April 2018 – The regulations will be enforced upon the granting of a new lease as well as lease renewals. April 2023 – The regulations will apply to ALL privately rented property in scope of the regulations, including where a lease is already in place and a property is occupied.
Why is it being enforced?
The Energy Act 2011 contains a number of provisions that will affect owners of property; the most significant of these is MEES, which aims to improve the energy efficiency of the most energy inefficient properties.
MEES also contributes to the UK legislative targets of reducing CO2 emissions for all buildings to around zero by 2050.
Are there any exemptions?
Landlords can be made exempt from MEES if they are able to demonstrate one of the following:
- They have carried out all cost-effective energy efficiency improvements
- Measures Identified by Green Deal or an alternative government scheme are not cost effective (devalue the property by 5% or more. Or fail to raise the EPC rating above an F)
- Or If third-party consents are not available despite reasonable effort.
All of these exemptions are likely to have a time constraint attached to them.
If you need to know more about MEES, please contact us.