Wealden District Council has been given nearly £20,000 from Government to help stop landlords renting out cold draughty properties.
Councillor Ray Cade, Housing and Benefits Portfolio Holder said:
Since April last year, privately rented homes must meet a minimum energy performance rating of EPC Band E, making it illegal to rent out homes below that unless landlords have a registered exemption,
Landlords caught failing to fulfil their obligations can be fined up to £5,000 per property. However, we want to work with landlords to help them understand their obligations and help improve the worst performing properties.Cllr Cade
Badly insulated properties often leave those renting their homes struggling to keep warm and with higher energy bills. Early research indicates there are approximately 279 properties in Wealden that don’t comply with the new regulations.
The Government have said the EPC rule change should see energy efficiency upgrades such as loft insulation, double glazing and cavity wall insulation being installed by landlords in around 290,000 properties – with an estimated average bill saving of £180 a year for each home.
Wealden District Council are one of 59 local authorities that have been allocated a share of £4.3 million by the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy; although their £19,500 allocation is comparatively small.
Locally the money with be used to support additional staff resources, primarily to locate non-compliant properties and engage with landlords. Wealden District Council will also be undertaking a media campaign to raise awareness across the private rented tenanted community.