Eddisons agents are reminding small landlords of their statutory obligation to have a current EPC certificate for every business property in their portfolio – regardless of whether the property is occupied or not.

And not only is the obligation to be in possession of a current EPC, but also the property must achieve an EPC certification grade of ‘E’ or above. It has been unlawful to market a property for lease below grade ‘E’ status since April 2018.

Eddisons’ reminder comes from a shared concern in the agency sector that many small-scale landlords may still be unaware that, since 01 April, it has been unlawful for every set of business premises not to have a ‘live’ EPC. And any landlord of any type of mainstream commercial property without a valid EPC risks prosecution.

Spreading awareness to small portfolio landlords

While there are exemptions, they are for very limited scenarios. And the onus is on the landlord to make the case within these parameters. Eddisons agents are addressing small private landlords in particular now because, unlike those with large portfolios, for whom being a property landlord is their sole or main business focus, the agents are sensing a lack of awareness among small portfolio or sole property landlords.

Gavin Hynes, Director, Eddisons in Peterborough, explains, “Landlords with, say, one or two properties – particularly if the properties are a business side line, or personal or family investment – are unlikely to be followers of property sector channels of chatter or subscribers to the property sector press where the 01 April EPC changes have been trailed and chewed over for years.

“As it’s only been unlawful to market any commercial premises for letting with an EPC of E or above since 2018, it may see some landlords labouring under the misapprehension that they are operating lawfully on the EPC front if, for instance, they have had tenant on a 15-year lease that began in 2012.

“A certificate from 2012 is not a current certificate – even though it was all that was required at the time.

“An empty property also requires EPC certification too unless exempt.

“With further changes to commercial property and EPC regulations anticipated by the sector in 2025, 2027 and 2030 as current government policy stands, we are urging small landlords to act now to protect their current position and to ‘future-proof’ the energy performance of their property in discussing upgrades to the fabric of the building.”

To discuss EPC obligations and energy performance certification, landlords should contact their local Eddisons office.

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