Should my Mortgage Payment take a holiday?
Time off from payments with no strings attached. Great, right? Well, you get nothing for nothing and that is especially true when talking to a bank!
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Recently the Chancellor made some interesting announcements in the Summer Statement designed to help to stimulate the economy. One that should be of interest to Landlords are grants for Landlords & Home Owners to help make their properties more energy efficient.
From September 2020 landlords and homeowners in England can apply for a voucher to fund two-thirds of the cost of hiring tradespeople to upgrade the energy performance of their homes, up to a maximum contribution of £5,000 for things like loft, wall and floor insulation or double glazing.
You may well know that it is now not possible to rent out a property that has an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) with a rating of F or G (the lowest bandings), unless an exemption has been granted. The most common exemption is where a landlord has reached the maximum spend cap of £3500.
So in the first instance this grant can help those landlords with F or G rated properties improve the property with less cost to them. The exemptions themselves are only for 5 years, so when they lapse the landlord needs to reach the max spend level again to be given another exemption (assuming the minimum level is still not reached). On this basis Landlords with a current exemption should jump on this as a way to help fund some of the bigger ticket items to improve energy efficiency.
Well the chances are that in the next 10 or so years the minimum energy efficiency levels in rental properties will be raised to E then to D, so if your property sits in these bands you should consider taking advantage of these grants now as they may not exist when you need to make improvements in the future!
Not to mention the fact that you will be making improvements to your property for a lower cost and it will attract more climate-conscious tenants.
We are still waiting to see the finer detail of the application process, but you can see some more information here: https://www.simpleenergyadvice.org.uk/grants
If you can’t find your current EPC you can find it by searching here: https://www.epcregister.com/