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Question

Energy Performance Certificates (England) | Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) (England)

EPC for HMOs

4 Feb 2018 | 1 comment

Please can you clarify the requirements for EPCs for HMOs in particular with relation to the new HMO licensing guidelines? Can you quote the appropriate legislation either way too please. Appreciated for England, Wales and Scotland. Thanks!

Answer

1 Comment

  1. guildy

    If all the tenants are on a single joint and several tenancy comprising the HMO, an EPC is required (because you’re just letting a house).

    If however, for the same house you grant separate tenancies to each tenant on a room by room basis, government guidance says that an EPC is not necessary.

    An EPC is not required for an individual room when rented out, as it is not a building or a building unit designed or altered for separate use. The whole building will require an EPC if sold or rented out.

    Despite this, this is not what we recommend and we say in our article:

    However, this is not our advice! Since October 2015, a landlord in England cannot serve a section 21 notice if they haven’t given the tenant an EPC. It is therefore submitted that it’s better to have one done for the whole building and give each individual room a copy as and when a new tenancy is given. That way, there is no arguing over possession with the court. Furthermore, the new accelerated possession claim form simply asks has the tenant been given an EPC- it doesn’t have an option in the form for “an EPC is not required”. As such, an explanation would need to be added if there is no EPC given.

    Furthermore, the minimum energy guidance states at paragraph 9:

    Please note that there is no obligation to obtain an EPC on a letting of an individual non self – contained unit within a property, such as a bedsit or a room in a house in multiple occupation (HMO). However the property in which the unit is situated may already have its own EPC covering that property as a whole; this could be because the property had been bought within the past ten years, or because it had previously been rented out on a whole-property basis. If a property as a whole has a valid EPC and that EPC shows an energy efficiency rating of F or G, then the owner/landlord will not, from April 2018, be able to issue new tenancies for non-self-contained units within the property until steps are taken to comply with the Regulations.

    As a result, it is best to ensure the building as a whole has a rating of “E” or better and a copy given to each tenant.

    The rules apply to England and Wales. We don’t cover Scotland but guess the same rules apply as it’s from EU Directives.

    For the cost of approximately £70 for 10 years for the whole house (not per room), we don’t think it’s worth arguing over! Please see this article for more details, the guidance and the legislation.

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