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Rising Energy Prices – The effect on Landlords & Tenants

If you’ve been watching or listening to the news recently, you will know that from 1st April 2022 there will be an increase on the energy price cap as a result of the record increase in gas prices seen over the last 6 months. This will add, on average, £693 - a 54% increase to each household energy bill and is causing some distress for many households not knowing whether to heat or eat throughout the winter months. Tenants may be hit especially hard as rent prices are also on the increase to combat the soaring cost of living.

Rising Energy Prices – The effect on Landlords & Tenants

A recent survey of UK renters commissioned by Smart Energy GB highlights the many concerns that Tenants face about the hike in prices. It found that a staggering 65% of people said that the rising fuel costs would make it difficult to pay their energy bills with an even more staggering 62% saying that they anticipated they would struggle to pay their rent over the colder months. Include  the rising food prices and it soon makes for a worrying time for many individuals now facing the possibility of falling into rent arrears.

Unfortunately falling into arrears can also mean that the Tenant will face eviction and the Landlord may have to begin the process of serving notice. According to Which? there has been a 50% increase on households who have fallen behind on their monthly payments and, for the first time, they saw clear signs that many people were having to adjust their spending just to enable them to stay afloat.

If you are a Landlord it is helpful if your Tenants understand just how much the price increase will affect them and, where possible, help them to understand what they can do to minimise the risk of falling into arrears. Perhaps fitting a Smart Meter could help, or ensure they are aware of any financial support they may be entitled to, which in turn, can help them to keep on top of payments. If, despite everyone’s best efforts they still fall into arrears, a payment plan could be of beneficial use to ensure that all payments are still being met to tide you over until the summer months, when it is hoped less energy will be being used.

Likewise, if you are a Tenant and are struggling to pay your rent it is very important that you speak to your Landlord as soon as the problem arises to try and solve the issue as quickly and as efficiently as possible. This can help to avoid or limit any repercussions you may face through arrears.

There are also proposals to increase the energy efficiency of all rental properties which means that all private Landlords may have to invest in their properties to increase their EPC rating to at least a ‘C’ by 2028 as part of the Government’s Net Zero target, with many Landlords already choosing to make the required changes. Privately rented properties make up at least 20% of the housing stock and are typically among the least energy efficient of all homes. Improving the efficiency of these homes could also help to lessen the burden that the rising cost of energy will bring as the years go on.

Our specialist Landlord and Tenant Team have realms of experience when it comes to handling all your renting queries and requirements. At Hodgkinsons Solicitors we have helped individuals throughout Skegness, rural Lincolnshire and beyond with Landlord and Tenant matters for almost 40 years. Whether you are located in Skegness, Boston, Louth, Lincoln, or surrounding areas, we can help you. If you would like to discuss a Landlord or Tenant matter with our Lawyers, please get in touch by submitting a contact form online or by calling us on 01754 897150.