The Government has abandoned attempts to introduce changes to EPC rules in less than a fortnight's time, on July 1. A senior official at Communities and Local Government said yesterday that they had run out of time.
It is understood that the Regulatory Policy Committee, which scrutinises new regulations, has failed to give clearance.
The delay means that all the EPC changes are now likely to be introduced on October 1, provided that the required Statutory Instruments can be laid before Parliament prior to the summer recess.
The EPC changes would mean that letting agents, landlords and estate agents will have to observe new rules.
Currently, they are allowed to start marketing a property without an EPC provided one is ordered, with the expectation that an EPC is in place within 28 days. However, the existing regulations do not say what would happen if an EPC had not materialised in that time.
The new regulations will give agents (both sales and lettings) and landlords seven days to procure an EPC from when marketing starts, and a further 21 days if, for some reason, an EPC has not been procured.
The difference in the new regime will be that after 28 days, Trading Standards will be able to take action.
Another key difference will be that the EPC, not just the graphs, will have to be attached to all particulars, for both sales and rental properties.
Further changes to EPCs are due next year under European legislation. This will require the Government to introduce legislation requiring the energy rating to be included in all property adverts.
A consultation will be held to determine what a ‘property advert’ is – for example, whether it includes For Sale and To Let boards, or internet listings.
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Source: Letting Agent Today