The government is determined to improve the energy efficiency of the housing stock and is planning to force local authorities to put pressure on landlords of let property to insulate them. Local authorities already have power to require landlords to carry out work on their properties or face fines of up to £5,000. These fines would not be covered by your landlord insurance and although landlords legal insurance can protect you for some specified legal action fines imposed on you would not be covered.
Further laws are planned so that if tenants request energy efficiency work at a property the landlord cannot refuse without a very good reason. The government is hoping to introduce this new right for tenants by 2015.
The English House Condition Survey in 2008 found that private rented houses were among the worst performing properties in terms of energy efficiency. 68% of private rentals had no cavity wall insulation and 45% had poor loft insulation.
Landlords have responded by arguing that the private rented sector includes many older houses that are difficult to bring up to modern insulation standards. Despite this it seems that landlords will have to develop a plan to bring their properties up to scratch or risk intervention from the authorities.