Does the acronym “MEES” or the expanded “Minimum Energy Efficient Standards” mean anything to you?
If they’ve both drawn a blank, then you may have cause for concern.
If you’re in the dark about the above, you’re far from alone.
- around two-thirds of landlords are hazy about what this is and how it will affect their business;
- about 25% know nothing at all about MEES.
A full breakdown of the worrying statistics is given in the reference link above and what’s really of concern is that MEES isn’t just another piece of red tape or a minor administrative task. If you get it wrong it could easily stop your business in its tracks.
So, it will pay to get to grips with this – and fast.
What is MEES?
Over many years now successive governments have launched major initiatives, backed up by legislation, all aimed at reducing the country’s energy consumption.
They have been driven partly by environmental concerns but also by the hard fact that our civilization’s ever-growing energy demands look unlikely to be met in the future. Given declining fossil fuel levels and the uncertainty over the practicality of nuclear and alternative Green energies, it looks possible that we’ll have a very real gap between demand and supply capabilities in the future.
So while a scientific breakthrough in energy generation might be hoped for, in the meantime, the only viable route looks to be trying to consume less energy.
MEES is one such initiative.
It’s aimed specifically at landlords and let properties. In a nutshell, it will make it illegal to let a property after 1st April 2018 unless it meets certain minimum energy efficiency criteria. That’s the now broadly familiar letter designation that’s allocated after a survey on an Energy Performance Certificate or EPC.
If your property is graded in the F or G bands, then from April 2018 you won’t be able to let it unless you’re granted a special exemption. A failure to comply with the regulation could result in a penalty of up to 20% of the rateable value of the property after three months.
At Cover4LetProperty, we’re expert in things such as landlord insurance rather than building technology and its associated costs.
Even so, it’s clear that these changes in regulations might have a serious impact on some landlords. Certain of them may feel they’re trapped between the need to keep letting their property and the difficulty of finding the money required to upgrade their property to a higher energy efficiency rating.
Some energy saving measures can typically be implemented quickly and at modest cost. Examples such as draught excluders come to mind. However, other required work can be more expensive, such as fitting double glazing.
Fortunately, there is at least some assistance which might be available in the shape of the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) scheme. This is where the energy supply companies assist by installing insulation and other related assistance either free of charge or at reduced rates.
Whatever the impact of MEES will be on your business, ignoring it wouldn’t be advisable.
It will affect very large numbers of landlord properties and those changes will need to be understood and above all managed, if potential fines are to be avoided or your business effectively stopped.
Finding some time to get to grips with MEES and what it will mean to you, might be advisable – and perhaps sooner rather than later.