Wigan Council working towards creating warmer, greener homes in the borough

Wigan Council working towards creating warmer, greener homes in the borough

A major project spearheaded by Wigan Council’s housing teams to improve the energy efficiency of rented properties and reduce fuel poverty is underway.

In 2020, changes to the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) regulations stated that privately rented properties must have an energy performance rating of E or above.

Council officers will be working closely with the borough’s landlords to help improve their energy ratings improving housing conditions for private tenants.

It is also hoped the project, backed by government funding, will help to reduce levels of fuel poverty across the borough as the changes will make it cheaper for residents to heat their more energy efficient homes.

Councillor Susan Gambles, cabinet portfolio holder for housing, said: “There are more than 18,500 households privately renting across the borough.

“We know that keeping some homes warm is a particular problem for some of our residents and it is coming up to winter, so we hope that this work with private landlords will help to improve the quality of life for our residents as we know a cold home can have an impact on physical and mental wellbeing.

“Properties with poor Energy Performance Certificate ratings tend to be poorly insulated or have insufficient heating systems which means tenants have increased energy bills from trying to heat their homes.

“New rules around energy efficiency standards will benefit landlords too, with lower ongoing maintenance costs, higher tenant satisfaction and a warmer more comfortable home.”

Thousands of privately rented properties that do not currently comply with the energy regulations could be eligible.

The project is backed by the Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy and assisted by the Midlands Energy Hub.

Michael Gallagher, head of Midlands Energy Hub, added: “Midlands Energy Hub are delighted to be supporting Wigan Council with the Private Rented Sector Enforcement Competition, funded by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (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.”

The new MEES regulations mean any properties with an F or G rating should not be rented out unless exempt.

Find out more information on Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) Regulations.

Posted on Wednesday 1st December 2021

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