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Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES)

Information for landlords and tenants on energy efficiency regulations.

Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) Regulations 2015

In April 2020, these came into force. They state that privately rented properties should have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of E or above.

Properties with a F or G should not be rented out, unless exempt. If exempt, an entry must be made with the National Exemption Register.


In some cases, there are funds to cover the cost of the works or part of it.

These funds are from different providers, so you could benefit if you find out what there is before you start any works.

For help and advice:

Why the regulations have been brought in

Public health

Poor energy efficiency in a person's home can lead to lower indoor temperatures in the winter months. Exposure to cold has been associated with:

  • Increased winter deaths;
  • risk of respiratory and circulatory conditions;
  • cardiovascular problems and arthritic/rheumatic illnesses;
  • and can exacerbate existing health conditions that include common flu and cold and allergies.

Also, being cold can increase injury from accidents, as being warm improves general safety, hand strength and dexterity.

Cold living conditions can also affect mental health as cold homes can cause stress and anxiety.

  • The Building Research Establishment highlights that cold related illness costs the NHS over £35 million per year.
  • Tackling cold related illness helps limit the impact on the NHS.

Fuel poverty

This is highest in the Private Rented Sector (PRS) at 21.3% of households nationally, compared to owner occupied properties at 7.4%.

Those in the PRS also tend to be deeper in fuel poverty:

  • An average fuel poverty gap of £410;
  • compared to £175 for those in social housing.
  • Also, 45% of households that live in F and G rated properties are classified as fuel poor.

Enforcement of the regulations for those in the deepest levels of fuel poverty can make a real difference in the sector. (BEIS committee on fuel poverty annual report 2017.)

  • In Calderdale, fuel poverty now affect over 31,000 homes.
  • Around 1 in 3 households struggle to pay their energy bills in this 'cost of living' crisis.

Climate change

Energy used in our homes accounts for more than a quarter of energy use and carbon dioxide emissions in the UK. It is more than is used in road transport or industry, which is a major chance to cut energy use and CO2 emissions.

  • The PRS has doubled in size since 2002 in the UK. It now accounts for around 20% of the UK's total housing stock.
  • F and G rated properties waste energy. They impose unnecessary cost on tenants and they contribute to avoidable greenhouse gas emissions.

If we increase our PRS' energy efficiency, it will greatly contribute to Government and Local targets. (These are for the reduction of carbon emissions and the climate change agenda.)

Future targets

The 2015 Fuel Strategy

This makes provision for as many private rented homes as possible to be upgraded to EPC Band D by 2025.

These targets are not law yet. Although, the Government's Clean Growth Strategy will look at a long-term path for energy performance standards across the PRS. This aims to get as many private rented homes as possible up to EPC Band C by 2030. (Where practical, cost-effective and affordable.)

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