Skip to content

Antony Antoniou – Luxury Property Expert

The Collision Course: How Net Zero Targets Could Impact Falling House Prices

The Collision Course: How Net Zero Targets Could Impact Falling House Prices


As Britain sets its sights on achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, the nation’s aging and inefficient housing stock emerges as a significant hurdle. With millions of homes contributing to carbon emissions, the government’s efforts to promote energy-efficient upgrades pose a potential threat to the property market. In this blog post, we’ll explore how the pursuit of net zero could exacerbate falling house prices, particularly impacting landlords and buy-to-let investors. Additionally, we’ll delve into the proposed regulations and their potential implications for both residential and commercial properties.

1. The Impending Rules and Regulations:

The government’s plan to improve energy efficiency revolves around the use of Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs). These certificates rate homes on a scale of A to G based on their energy efficiency. Proposed regulations indicate that landlords will be prohibited from letting properties unless they meet net zero energy efficiency targets by 2028, with a minimum EPC rating of C or above. Failure to comply could result in fines of up to £30,000. Homeowners with mortgages might also be required to achieve a C rating by 2030, while those without mortgages could face the same standards by 2035.

2. Impact on House Prices:

Economists are predicting a significant impact on house prices as deadlines approach for landlords to meet energy efficiency requirements. The cost of upgrading properties, combined with higher mortgage payments, could render many properties unprofitable for landlords. This, in turn, could flood the market with second-hand supply, leading to further drops in house prices. According to Capital Economics, house prices have already fallen by 4% from last year’s peak, with an expected additional 8% decline. As demand from landlords decreases, properties that fall below rental standards might experience reduced prices due to decreased demand.

3. Challenges for Landlords:

Landlords are particularly vulnerable to the proposed regulations, given the removal of tax breaks and eviction red tape in recent years. Many landlords have already chosen to sell their properties, while others fear being squeezed out of profitable market segments. The cost of upgrades and potential financial burdens could render their businesses unviable. Additionally, the impact extends to commercial properties, as similar regulations are being introduced. The ban on renting offices with an energy efficiency rating below E is just the beginning, with stricter regulations planned for the coming years.

4. The Costly Upgrades:

Upgrading properties to meet minimum standards can be a costly endeavor for homeowners. On average, the cost of upgrading a property from an EPC rating of D or below to a C rating is approximately £9,260. However, these costs vary, with properties in lower EPC bands requiring even more substantial investments. The lack of clear guidelines for achieving a C rating and the perceived flaws in the assessment process further complicate matters.

5. Concerns and Call for Fairness:

Industry experts and stakeholders have expressed concerns regarding the fairness and potential consequences of the proposed regulations. The lack of standardization in EPC assessments raises questions about the accuracy and consistency of the ratings. Furthermore, there are worries that properties falling below the required standards might experience devaluation or become difficult to sell, potentially leaving property owners in financial distress. Calls have been made for the government to ensure a fair transition to net zero that does not leave anyone behind.

6. Impact on the Commercial Sector:

The impact of net zero targets extends beyond residential properties to the commercial sector. The introduction of Minimum Energy Efficient Standards (MEES) prohibits the rental of commercial office spaces with an energy efficiency rating below E. As the government plans to tighten these regulations, commercial property investors face substantial costs to upgrade and convert obsolete properties. These additional pressures contribute to declining prices in the already struggling commercial real estate market.


The pursuit of net zero emissions is an essential and ambitious goal for Britain’s environmental sustainability. However, the regulations and targets set to achieve this aim pose significant challenges for the property market, with potential consequences for falling house prices and the viability of buy-to-let investments. Striking a balance between environmental goals and the interests of property owners, landlords, and investors will be crucial to ensure a fair and successful transition to a net-zero future.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments