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Guidance for landlords on Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES)

Under government legislation, domestic private rented properties are required to meet a minimum energy efficiency standard before they can be rented to tenants. This is defined as an energy performance certificate (EPC) rating of E or above.

The full name of the legislation is the Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England & Wales) Regulations 2015, usually described as Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES). There is also a MEES obligation for non-domestic properties, see here for details.

The regulations apply to private rented properties that are let on specific types of tenancy agreements (assured, regulated or domestic agricultural tenancy) and which are legally required to have an EPC (e.g. that have been sold or let in the past 10 years). Click here to see a list of properties not covered by MEES.

This means:

  • If the property does not have an EPC, the landlord needs to get one.
  • If the property has an EPC rating of F or G, the landlord needs to undertake the measure - or package of measures - recommended in the EPC report to bring the property up to an EPC band E, spending up to £3,500* (including VAT) to achieve this (but can spend less if EPC band E is still achieved).

*If any energy efficiency improvements have been made to the property since 1 October 2017, they can include the cost of those improvements in the £3,500 cost cap

A few things to note:

It is possible to apply for an exemption; click here for details.

The regulations may change in 2025 to specify a higher band C for new tenancies.

If an EPC was carried out before 2017 it may be worth considering a new one. This is because an older EPC may not list all of the relevant energy efficiency measures, or because it contains assumptions about the energy efficiency of a building material that has changed. This may affect, for example, the way that some solid wall properties are assessed. However, this is unlikely to bring a G-rated property up to an E, so there would still be work to be done.

Some properties do not require an EPC and are therefore not subject to MEES regulations. These include:

  • Temporary buildings that will be used for less than 2 years.
  • Stand-alone buildings with total useful floor space of less than 50 square metres.
  • Some buildings that are due to be demolished.
  • Holiday accommodation rented out for less than 4 months a year, or let under a licence to occupy.
  • Properties with tenancies over 10 years old that haven't been sold or had any works requiring an EPC in the past 10 years.
  • Residential buildings intended to be used less than 4 months a year.
  • Some listed buildings, landlords should seek advice from their local authority conservation officer about appropriate energy efficiency measures for the property. 
  • Most Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) where rooms are let on individual tenancies*
  • A room in a hall of residence or hostel. 

*However, where there is an EPC for the building as a whole where it has been let, sold or modified as a single unit in the last 10 years, the building itself will need to comply with MEES.

Types of exemption and how to apply

If the property needs to comply with the MEES regulations but cannot reasonably achieve an EPC rating of E, there are various exemptions available.

High cost exemption
Apply for this if the cost of making even the cheapest recommended improvement would exceed £3,500 (including VAT).

All-improvements-made exemption
Where all the “relevant energy efficiency improvements” for the property have been made but the property’s EPC rating remains below an E.

Wall insulation exemption
Where expert advice has concluded that the measure is not appropriate for the property due to its potential negative impact on the fabric or structure of the property. Includes cavity, internal and external wall insulation.

Consent exemption
Certain energy efficiency improvements may legally require third-party consent and this has not been obtained - this could be the tenant or planning department.

Devaluation exemption
Where expert advice has concluded that the installation of specific energy efficiency measures would reduce the market value of the property - or the building it forms part of - by more than 5%.

New landlord exemption
A person who becomes a landlord under certain circumstances can apply for this exemption. This is for the landlord to determine, and they are advised to seek their own legal advice.

You can read more about MEES exemptions, including information about the specific evidence that needs to be submitted for each exemption, here. Exemptions must be registered on this website.

Advice to landlords

  • Take advantage of any grant funding that is currently on offer as it may not be available to you in the future as the eligibility criteria are based on the your circumstances which may change.
  • You do not need to install measures in the order that they are listed on your EPC. 
  • Although the EPC lists the measures in a way that gives an accumulative score, the number of points awarded for each individual measure are also shown.
  • You should choose measures from the list which together wouldn’t excede £3,500 (including VAT) to install.
  • There is a fixed penalty of £200 per dwelling for failing to produce an EPC when required, and a penalty of up to £5,000 per property for failing to meet the MEES obligations 

Finally, we're often asked if MEES affects the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS), and the answer is no. The latter is a process by which local authorities assess hazards in homes, including private rental, such damp and mould growth, excess cold or heat, pollutants, security, sanitation etc, and decide whether any enforcement action is needed. This is completely separate to MEES, and a property can meet MEES obligations while failing the HHSRS.

You can contact our Home Energy Team on 0800 082 2234 or email if you would like more information on the MEES regs.

Priority Services Register

If you live in the green or blue areas, we can sign you up to your local priority services register if you're over 60 or you rely on electricity for medical or mobility reasons or you have a hearing or visual impairment or a long-term health condition.

Click here for details.