Rotton’s Rambles – Walking with Andy McCarthy
This week’s ‘Rotton’s Rambles’ took me to Wollaton Park, Nottingham for a gentle stroll in the autumn sunshine with Andy McCarthy from Natwest.
We talked about many things, from my impending splenectomy, working from home and the rise of zoom through to caravans, holidays in the UK and Greggs vegan sausage rolls.
Our ramblings then brought us onto the subject of the changes to Energy Performance Certificates (EPC), which I explored in my blog last week. The blog focused on the impending changes in rating from an ‘E’ to a ‘C’ or higher’ by 2025 (2028 for existing tenancies) for residential property.
According to Andy, non-residential properties have potentially even tougher targets, aiming to increase EPC ratings to ‘C’ by 2027 and ‘B’ by 2030! These targets were introduced as part of a recent Government consultation and were broadly accepted and seem highly likely to be introduced.
The discussion then turned to the ripple effect this will cause for all parties involved. Our thoughts are that: –
- Landlords need to consider this sooner rather than later as costs will be incurred without any capital appreciation and with little opportunity to increase rents
- Properties with already improved ratings may start to have a price premium whilst those requiring upgrades will see purchasers driving prices down to allow for costs to improve
- Lenders will be taking a hard look at any new investment finance to ascertain client’s portfolio and risks to borrowing if a property doesn’t meet EPC level and consequently can’t be let out
- Effectively, any new 5-year fixed BTL (Buy to Let) loans or 10 years + facilities will be at potential risk of this and so will undoubtedly be subject to detailed understanding of landlords plans for improvements
Our biggest concern is the lack of awareness within the sector. With the financial consequences involved, we agreed that as an industry we need to try to raise awareness on the subject.
Ramble over for today and I can confirm the vegan sausage rolls are excellent!