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  • Buy-to-Let

    EPC - upgrade to GCH not suggested

    Just looking at an EPC today, the house currently has electric wall heaters (3 storeys - aaaahhhh!) but there's no suggestion to replace with GCH which is odd. I remember another thread on here (that I now can't locate of course) mentioning there's a drive to move away from GCH, but I still feel it makes sense.

    The suggestion is: 'High heat retention storage heaters' - Cost = £2k-£3k for Typical savings of £125pa according tot the EPC.

    Putting in GCH will cost £5k in this sort of property at a conservative guess so I have to factor that in.

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    Also need to factor in whether GCH may mean less tenant turnover.

    Tenants may move in for initial 6 months and be naïve around cost of running Storage Heaters - as well as fact they tend to exude the heat at strange times of day - so may well need top up of heating via electric convectors - with a 2 Kw heater costing around 35 pence per hr (at basic rate elec cost). Lounge may easily need 2 convectors on full in winter at cost of 70 pence an hr.

    I say basic cost - as an Econ 7 tariff may save half the cost of elec for appliances specifically wired in to that circuit - but downside is then all other sockets/lighting are charged at around double the base cost (last time I looked).

    Immersion heater would logically also need to be wired in to Econ 7 circuit - though the property may have an electric shower.

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    Bear in mind that gas will, in time, cost a lot more in safety checks, maintenance, repairs and so on... i.e. a lot more headache.

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    That said there is talk of min EPC for rentals moving to C grade in  a few yrs - and currently gas remains far cheaper than electricity for heating.

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    Is there a gas supply to the property ?

    (or epc assessor may not have ticked the box to say that there is a gas supply in which case it doesn't get selected as a recommendation )

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    DISCLAIMER just my personal opinion - for legal advice consult a qualified professional grown-up.


    Good point about gas connected - there's definitely gas in the area but this is the first EPC I've seen where upgrading to GCH has not been suggested.

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