With the countdown on to bring the UK rental market up to scratch, new data from Spring’s MoveSmart platform, utilising data from Propalt, has revealed the areas where energy performance certificate (EPC) ratings are at their lowest.

Rented out homes in Cleethorpes (Lincolnshire), Barrow-in-Furness (Cumbria), Westcliff-on-Sea (Essex), Grimsby (Lincolnshire) and Accrington (Lancashire) have the worst ratings in the UK. Of the 683 landlord-owned homes in Cleethorpes, 80% have a D-G rating; while in Barrow-in-Furness 1,067 (79%) rented properties have the lower ratings. Seventy-two percent of Westcliff-on-Sea and Grimsby rental homes have D-G ratings, while Accrington stands at 71%, meaning costly works for landlords to bring their homes up to the required standards.

At a time when energy prices are soaring and tenants are feeling the cost of living crisis, the Government has advised landlords across England and Wales that by 2025 all rental properties will need an EPC rating of ‘C’ or above. An EPC rating gives detailed information about property’s energy efficiency and carbon dioxide emissions. Whenever a property is built, sold or rented out in England and Wales, property developers and homeowners need to have an EPC ratings report carried out by an accredited assessor. However, research reveals that only 53% of all UK properties have a registered EPC and 58% of those with a registered EPC are rated between categories D-G, which means they are more expensive to run and not as environmentally friendly.

Research from Habito suggests costs of up to £6,000 to upgrade a one-bedroom property from rating D-C, rising significantly for larger homes. So, for landlords who may not have funds to spend money to bring their homes up to spec, offloading their properties to Spring may be a quicker route to sell. For landlords looking to move, Spring can offer completions in as little as seven days. Much shorter, than the UK’s average completion time that Zoopla recently recorded as taking up to five and a half months on average.

Cormac Henderson, CEO of Spring, comments: “A staggering amount of homes in the UK are not up to scratch in terms of energy performance, not only making them expensive to run but having a significant negative impact on the environment at a time when the climate crisis is front and centre of the global agenda. There appears to be a trend with a higher proportion of properties in the north having poorer energy efficiency.”

“With many landlords already facing rising costs, many of which are passed onto tenants, they will have a decision to make as to whether the cost of upgrading their properties is worth it or consider exiting the market as many have suggested.”

Using the MoveSmart search tool, comparing all areas across the UK, home sellers, buyers and renters can find out property affordability information from EPC ratings to average bill costs for lighting, heating and hot water. Movers can also find out completion times and average sale prices. The data for this research includes areas where there are 500 or more landlord-owned properties and pulls together information from Government sources including the Land Registry and from statistical technology firm, Propalt into one place. Landlord-owned properties include private landlords as well as those also owned by government authorities and Housing Associations.

Table of results

The data used to compile the lists with the areas that have the most and least D-G EPC Rating properties owned by landlords is based on areas where there are more than 500 landlord owned properties.

Areas with the most landlord-owned properties with a D-G EPC rating:

Town/Area Number of D-G EPC Rating, landlord owned properties Total number of landlord owned properties % of D-G EPC Ratings owned by landlords
Cleethorpes, North East Lincolnshire 544 683 80%
Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria 1,067 1,351 79%
Westcliff-on-Sea, Essex 945 1,314 72%
Grimsby, North East Lincolnshire 1,333 1,857 72%
Accrington, Lancashire 553 780 71%
Southend-on-Sea, Essex 1,182 1,679 70%
Kingston-Upon-Hull, East Riding of Yorkshire 4,628 6,703 69%
Blackpool, Lancashire 2,112 3,064 69%
Bootle, Merseyside 763 1,136 67%
Darwen, Lancashire 532 797 67%
Darlington, County Durham 929 1,397 66%
Edmonton, North London 1,417 2,165 65%
Halifax, West Yorkshire 1,103 1,548 65%
Hove, East Sussex 3,246 5,041 64%
Lytham St Annes, Lancashire 981 1,525 64%

Areas with the least landlord-owned properties with a D-G EPC rating:

Town/Area Number of D-G EPC Rating, landlord owned properties Total number of landlord owned properties % of D-G EPC Ratings owned by landlords
Wembley, North West London 997 4,811 23%
Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire 611 2,588 24%
Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire 671 2,838 24%
Cambridge, Cambridgeshire 1,051 3,621 29%
Salford, Greater Manchester 2,129 6,796 31%
Rochester, Kent 1,304 4,055 32%
Telford, Shropshire 875 2,665 33%
Chelmsford, Essex 839 2,474 34%
Bromsgrove, Kent 583 1,714 34%
Harlow, Essex 597 1,738 34%
Hayes, West London 589 1,629 36%
Acton, West London 1,056 2,765 38%
London (overall) 64,533 162,122 40%
Poole, Dorset 915 2,278 40%
Colchester, Essex 739 1,839 40%

Full data is available on request.

As featured in The Times, Property Reporter, Landlord Today, PBC Today and Property Investor Post.

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