Energy

Families in Wrexham who are in private rented properties can look forward to  warmer homes thanks to a new campaign to help us clampdown on landlords who are not ensuring their properties have a minimum energy rating of E.

This could potentially save low income tenants in private rented accommodation £180 on their energy bills whilst addressing fuel poverty and ensuring everyone can live in a warm home with affordable energy bills.

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400 homes in Wrexham could be more energy efficient

Since April 2020 private rental properties must meet a minimum energy performance rating of EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) Band E making it illegal to rent out homes below that unless a Landlord has registered an exemption. Failure to do comply with the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards could see fines of up to £5,000 issued.

Approximately 400 homes in Wrexham could see the benefit of improvements which can include central heating installations, loft insulation, double glazing and cavity wall insulation being installed.

To help us ensure the necessary improvements are carried out we’ve been awarded over £78,500 from the UK Government Business, Enterprise and Industrial Strategy Department. This will provide additional resources to raise awareness of the new legislation and to ensure landlords take the appropriate action as soon as possible.

The funding will also cover the cost of a specialist public protection officer to oversee the programme with support from Energy Efficiency Officers.

Following a promotional campaign we will then write to landlords to make them aware of their legal duties in addition to providing information and signposting to sources of available funding to make the necessary improvements.

I’m a landlord what action do I need to take?

If you are currently letting a property with an EPC rating of F or G, and you haven’t already taken action, you must improve the property’s rating to a minimum EPC rating of E straight away or register an exemption where applicable.

If you do not currently have a valid EPC for the property you must arrange for one to be carried out and take the appropriate action to ensure the property complies with the minimum required rating of ‘E’ or register an exemption.

If you are planning to let a property you need to make improvements to achieve a minimum rating of E or register an exemption before you let the property.

If your property is empty, and you are not planning to let it, you don’t need to take any action to improve its rating until you decide to let it again.

I’m a tenant action do I need to take?

As a tenant you may be able to help your landlord achieve improvements by applying for a energy efficiency grant if you are eligible.

Grant funding might be available for your landlord who will be required to carry out the recommended works and as a result of the improvements you will be able to benefit from lower fuel bills.

If you require any further information about this campaign please email HealthandHousing@wrexham.gov.uk.

Cllr Hugh Jones Lead Member for Communities, Partnerships, Public Protection and Public Protection, said, “Most of the landlords we know and deal with regularly are very responsible and will be more than happy to make the improvements.

“However, any who do not reach the minimum standard within a reasonable time will face enforcement. It will be a last resort but it will be taken in order to ensure tenants in Wrexham are living in improved properties.”

“Lower energy bills”

Cllr David Griffiths Lead Member for Housing, said, “This is excellent news for those tenants in privately rented properties who will soon be able to benefit from improved properties and lower energy bills. It will also play a big part in ensuring the county borough’s housing standards are improved for all our residents.”

Michael Gallagher, Head of Midlands Energy Hub, said “Midlands Energy Hub are delighted to be supporting Wrexham County Borough Council with the PRS Enforcement Competition, funded by BEIS. This competition looks to assist 59 local authorities across England and Wales with implementing and enforcing the requirements of the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES) Regulations.

“Through improving the quality of housing stock, the whole project looks to target over 95,000 of the worst-performing private rented homes with the ultimate aim of tackling fuel poverty and reducing carbon emissions produced by the domestic housing sector.”

MIdlands Energy Hub

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