This week’s cold snap has provided an icy reminder that landlords have less than one month to make sure their properties comply with new energy efficiency rules.

The new standards come into force on April 1, and mean that all new lets (including renewals) must be minimum Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rated E.

David Cox, chief executive of ARLA Propertymark warned that there are still a lot of properties out there which fail to meet the new standard:

He said: “Landlords have been responding to tenants’ demands for better quality and better insulated homes over the last few years; the number of properties which are EPC rated F or G has fallen from around 700,000 in 2012, to 300,000 today.

"However, there are still a lot which don’t meet the standards.

“After the deadline passes at the end of this month, landlords face fines of up to £4,000 for flouting the law, or losing money on empty properties which can’t be let until they meet the standards.

"This will also have implications on the wider rental market, which is in the midst of a serious supply crisis.

"There are Green Deal finance plans available and you can contact companies such as Propertymark’s industry supplier Eco-energi to find out how to upgrade your property for a low cost.

"For any landlords who haven’t yet started to upgrade their properties, now is the time to act – and quickly.”