Energy Standards for Non-Domestic Property

view of windows in a refurbished commercial building

The government are currently consulting on a range of issues related to building services. This month they have opened a new consultation on Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) for Non-Domestic Rented Property.

Patrick Nicholls summarises the key points and their implications for landlords and design teams:

  • The minimum EPC required to rent out a non-domestic property is to rise from the current level of E (which came into force in April 2018) to either B or C by 2030. The pathway to that is still to be determined.
  • It is likely to be introduced in phases e.g. one example given is to raise the minimum to D in 2024, C in 2026 and B in 2028 for all new tenancies, then B for all tenancies in 2030.
  • The consultation solicits feedback on this pathway along with potential challenges, such as the split of responsibility for energy efficiency upgrades at the point where the tenancy is granted between landlords and tenants (e.g. for retail or office fit out etc).

What happens next?

The consultation is open until 7th January 2020, with the legislation likely to be published later that year. You can read the full government document here and have your say here.

A similar consultation for domestic properties will follow shortly, with the minimum standard for domestic rented sector property also rising in the near future.

It is important to start considering the upcoming changes now, particularly where improvement work is already planned or in progress. For buildings which currently have an EPC rating of C, D or E, consideration needs to be given to the remaining lifespan of equipment and the potential scale of work required to improve the rating. The lowest rated properties will likely need prioritising for improvement in line with the suggested timescale for the phased introduction of minimum standards.

We carry out Condition and PPM Surveys and EPCs on non-domestic properties. Contact us to discuss your requirements.