THIS INFORMATION IS FOR THE NON-DOMESTIC PRIVATE RENTED SECTOR – COMMERCIAL LETS
In 2018, changes to the law made it illegal to sign a new or renewed lease for a non-domestic property that does not meet the MEES regulations, meaning for any property with an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of F or G.
From April 2023, the regulations will extend to all privately rented properties, including those where a lease is already in place and a property is occupied. Therefore, unless an exemption applies, it will be unlawful to continue renting out any property that does not meet the new regulations.
It has been estimated that up to 20% of non-domestic properties could have an EPC rating below an E, meaning that unless they were upgraded to meet the minimum standards or an exemption is successfully registered, it is now illegal to rent them.
Enforcement of the regulations is carried out by the local authority. Where a property does not meet the regulations, landlords can be fined up to £5,000 per property or up to 10% of the rateable value of the property. In addition, there is also a risk of loss of value of the property, with the marketability likely to suffer and lenders, banks, and pension funds less inclined to consider properties that are EPC band F or G.
There are a number of exemptions available to landlords. The full list can be found in the Non-Domestic MEES Guide. However, it is important to note that most exemptions are only valid for a maximum of five years. After this time, landlords are required to resume efforts to improve the EPC rating of their properties. To register for an exemption, visit the government webpage, Register an Exemption.
Further changes to the MEES regulations are expected over the coming decade.
Article from Elmhurst Energy; https://www.elmhurstenergy.co.uk/blog/2023/03/28/changes-to-non-domestic-mees/