Government Revises Energy Efficiency Requirements: Impact on Landlords and Homeowners

Publication Date: September 21, 2023

In a significant development, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has unveiled alterations to the government's energy efficiency agenda, affecting both homeowners and landlords. These revisions, which aim to strike a balance between environmental sustainability and practicality, have implications for achieving the ambitious Net Zero target by 2050. Here's what you need to know:

Scrapping of EPC C Upgrades for Landlords

Previously, the government mandated that landlords must upgrade their properties to attain an EPC C rating by 2025 for new tenancies and 2028 for all tenancies. However, Sunak's recent announcement suggests a change of course. Homeowners and landlords may no longer be obligated to meet these stringent energy efficiency targets. This means landlords will be spared from potential expenses of up to £10,000 in upgrades, with no fines for failing to meet the standard. Instead, encouragement for voluntary upgrades will persist.

Extended Transition Period for Gas Boilers

Sunak's address also touched upon the transition from gas boilers to low-carbon alternatives, particularly heat pumps. Rather than rapid implementation, only 80% of gas boilers are now expected to be phased out by 2035, granting households more time to adapt. Off-grid gas homes have until 2035 to make the switch. This measured approach alleviates the immediate financial burden on households, sparing them from the prospect of spending £10,000 to £15,000 on upgrades within the next three years. Sunak clarified, "We will never force anyone to rip out their existing boiler and replace it with a heat pump. You’ll only ever have to make the switch when you’re replacing your boiler anyway – and even then, not until 2035."

Boosted Support through the Boiler Upgrade Scheme

In tandem with these alterations, Sunak introduced enhancements to the Boiler Upgrade Scheme. This initiative offers grants to subsidise the cost of replacing gas boilers with eco-friendly alternatives like heat pumps or biomass boilers. The grants will see a 50% increase, allowing individuals to access up to £7,500 in support. Notably, Octopus Energy is offering a heat pump installation for free when taking advantage of this government-backed program, as reported by The Guardian.

These revisions in energy efficiency requirements reflect the government's efforts to strike a balance between environmental goals and practical considerations for homeowners and landlords, potentially alleviating financial burdens while still working towards a greener future.

For more detailed information, please refer to the official government website at