Residential Landlords Association (RLA)
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Why not make energy improvements tax deductible?

Energy efficiency improvements undertaken by landlords and recommended on EPCs should be tax deductible – with the RLA continuing its campaign for change as new minimum energy efficiency standards are brought in.

From tomorrow, all new tenancies and those being renewed will require properties to have an Energy Performance rating of E or better. From April 2020 the rules will apply to all rental properties.

Whilst the Government has said that landlords unable to access funding to make such improvements can register that their property is unable to meet the new standards, it is proposing that in due course a new £2,500 cap be introduced on the amount a landlord should be expected to pay to make the necessary improvements to their properties.

The RLA is arguing that all improvements a landlord carries out that are recommended on an Energy Performance Certificate should be tax deductible.

Currently landlords may make such a deduction for ‘repairs’ but not for ‘improvements’.

Such a policy would support landlords in all property types to make ambitious energy efficiency improvements, beyond just those who are required to bring their properties up to the Government’s target.

Linking tax relief to what is recommended on a Certificate would help to prevent abuses.

Recent research by RLA PEARL has found that 61 per cent of landlords would be encouraged to improve the energy efficiency of their properties if there was tax relief to do so.

According to official data, 6.6 per cent of private rented homes in England are rated either F or G for energy efficiency improvements.  This is down from 25.3 per cent a decade earlier.

David Smith, Policy Director for the RLA, said: “Whilst considerable improvements have been made over the last decade, private rented homes currently falling below the new energy standards are some of the hardest to treat properties of the country’s entire housing stock.

“Given the importance the Government attaches to improving the energy efficiency of rented homes there is a strong case for giving work to upgrade this the same tax treatment as for repairs.”

 For further information on grant and finance available through the RLA’s energy partners see the RLA’s energy efficiency funding page.

In addition to this the RLA has just launched two new classroom courses in Energy Efficiency Regulations and Practical Sustainability and Energy Efficiency. For more information and to book click here.


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