By Craig Smith

From 28th January 2013 the Green Deal will be coming into force as part of the Energy Act 2011. The idea is that households can have a grant from the Government to install more energy efficient improvements which will then be paid back as part of their utility bills.


The basic way that the deal will work is for a homeowner to have their property surveyed to see if they could benefit from the grant. The grant would only be given if the savings that could be made would outweigh the installation costs as there would be no point otherwise! Some of the more well known improvements include loft insulation or installing a more energy efficient boiler.

Once the improvements have been carried out, the homeowner would pay back the grant over a set period of time as part of their energy bills but this would not come to any more than their regular bill payments. This way, in theory, they start to enjoy the savings almost straight away.

Clearly, the longer you live at the house the more savings you should make. Even if you did need to sell up or move quicker than expected, the grant repayments would stay with the property itself rather than the owner so the new occupier would pick up the bill but also enjoy the savings!

Landlords and Tenants

Having this done in your own home looks like a great way to save money, particularly if you don’t plan on moving any time soon. But when it comes to rental properties, it gets a little more complicated.

A tenant could still save money and help the environment which can only be a good thing. However, tenants may not be so keen to take part in the scheme if they aren’t planning on staying put for very long. A lot of tenants, for example, only rent because they need to move around for work and may need to move on again in a few months time. Don’t forget that in the majority of lets it is the tenant who pays for the utilities, thus covering the extra bill and saving very little in the short term.

Good or Bad News for Letting?

Some tenants may see this as them paying for improvements to someone else’s property. And whilst they may enjoy some savings when they are living there, they wont gain anything when they vacate.

However, what sounds like a disadvantage for some Landlords could be beneficial to others, depending on the tenants in the property. Longer term tenants may want to benefit from the savings and could also improve the Landlords property at the same time. Perhaps a longer term tenancy agreement could be agreed for some tenants who would be willing to take up the grant? This would ensure that the tenant benefits from the potential savings and also gives both the Landlord and the tenant security of having the home let for a longer period.

Stricter Rules in the Coming Years

This deal comes in at just the right time as from April 2018, it looks set that no property with an EPC rating of a band E or lower could be legally let. (The aim is to not just save money but to reduce the impact on the environment from energy usage.) This could be bad news for Landlords of the more rural or older properties. We don’t yet know if the sales of such properties will be affected but with energy usage becoming bigger and bigger news, it does look as though it will have some impact. Would you want to buy a property knowing it would cost a fortune to run or not be able to let it out?

One Thought on “The Green Deal: How Will It Affect Rental Properties?

  1. Hi there, merely wanted to say, I enjoyed this article. That it was helpful. Carry on writing!

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