Council to start work towards 'green' homes in the town
Hastings Borough Council is starting a project to make the worst performing rented properties more energy efficient. The work will help to lower the rates of fuel poverty in the borough and improve the conditions in those properties.
Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) regulations state that from April 2020, privately rented properties should have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of E or above. Those with an F or G EPC rating should not be rented out, unless exempt.
The council's Housing Renewal team will work with landlords to meet these standards and will be investigating properties that do not. Failure to comply with the necessary improvements may lead to a maximum penalty of £5,000 issued to the landlord.
Cllr Andy Batsford, lead councillor for Housing and Homelessness, said,
"There are around 14,500 households living in rented properties in our borough and in 2018 there were over 5,000 households living in fuel poverty. The team will be looking to ensure as many as possible of these properties meet the minimum standards, so improvements can be made to the quality of life of our residents, whose physical and mental health can be severely impacted when living in a cold home.
"Properties with lower EPC ratings tend to be poorly insulated or have insufficient heating systems, meaning their tenants have increased energy bills from trying to heat their home.
"These new rules are also benefiting the landlords with lower on-going maintenance costs, higher tenant satisfaction and a more desirable property that has an increased market value."