8. Enforcement, sanctions and monitoring
As set out above, the costs of measures that need to be installed in order to meet the standard are generally relatively modest. They will also result in a more attractive product for landlords to offer to tenants. Furthermore, the minimum standard assessment will only propose measures which are appropriate, and we have proposed exceptions where the work cannot be completed due to technical, legal or excessive cost reasons. We also propose some situations where the landlord will have a longer period of time to bring the property up to standard. Phasing the regulations in at point of rental ahead of the backstop date also means that most of the works can be done during periods of vacant access. For these reasons, we expect that in the vast majority of cases the minimum energy efficiency standard will be met without local authorities having to take enforcement action.
We think that local authorities should be responsible for enforcing the minimum energy efficiency standards. This partial Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment does not assess the cost of monitoring and enforcing the minimum standards, as we will be exploring the costs of this with local authorities during the consultation. This will be included in the final Business and Regulatory Impact Assessment.
We propose that local authorities issue fines where owners do not comply with minimum standards (without valid evidence for an exception). We propose that there should be a civil penalty of up to £1,500 for not complying with minimum standards - £500 for failing to have a minimum standards assessment when required, and £1,000 for failing to carry out the improvements within 6 months of the assessment.
As part of the monitoring process, local authorities may wish to record the compliance of properties with the minimum standards, including where the rating identified by the assessment is lower than E or D, or where there are exceptions, to help assist with local housing stock condition work (for example Local Housing Strategies, etc.).
Email: Denise Buchanan