People who rent their homes are overpaying an average of £612 a year for their energy bills, new findings have shown.
Poor energy efficiency in many houses, often caused by landlords’ neglect, is leading to renters paying through the roof for their gas and electricity. According to the experts, in excess of 200,000 rented homes in the UK are so poorly insulated they only gain an F or G rating if assessed for an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC).
Fines of £5,000
Thankfully something is being done to help those worse affected – in April next year, the government will impose fines of as much as £5,000 on landlords if their properties don’t meet at least an E energy rating.
According to the government website, the new regulations say that landlords of privately rented non-domestic and domestic property in England or Wales must see that their properties reach a minimum EPC rating of E before offering a tenancy to new or existing tenants.
In the worst cases, houses which do not reach the standard may even be banned from being rented, effectively forcing landlords to take steps to make their properties more efficient.
One of these steps is to ensure all houses have double glazing, which is one of the basic ways of improving energy efficiency. Installing double glazing in Hereford with a Hereford Double Glazing Company is a simple process.
Many landlords, anticipating the new rules, will already have taken action, but if yours hasn’t, what can you do to ensure you’re not kept in the cold?
Steps You Can Take
The first thing you should do is talk to your landlord. If you’re not on speaking terms, send them a letter asking them, politely, to make sure they comply with the new regulations. Your landlord should respond, but if they don’t, you can contact your local authority’s environmental health department or the local branch of Citizens Advice for assistance.
If you think your home is not fit for purpose, you can ask your council to carry out a health and safety review. You could also send a formal complaint to the landlord, pointing out that they may be breaking their contract with you.
If you have a letting agent, get them involved at the earliest opportunity. They should help you decide on action.