Hastings Borough Council has been working with local landlords to ensure privately rented properties in the town are improved to meet current Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES).
Following changes to Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) regulations in April 2020, privately rented homes must now have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of E or above. Those letting properties with a rating below E must make improvements unless an exemption has been registered on the Government’s PRS exemptions register. Financial penalties of up to £5,000 per property can be issued if landlords do not meet their obligations.
Since the changes to regulations, Hastings Borough Council has been contacting landlords, letting agents, and managing agents to inform them of MEES and the legal obligation to comply with the regulations. The council has also held online information workshops, sent out guidance in newsletters and leaflets, and created an online MEES video to raise awareness of the requirements.
Residents who are concerned they are renting a property that does not have a valid EPC or has an EPC rating of an F or G can let the council know by completing a form on the Hastings Borough Council website www.hastings.gov.uk/MEES.
Cllr Andy Batsford, lead for Housing at Hastings Borough Council, said:
“Through external funding we have supported 242 landlords with properties that have an F or G rating and have signposted them to partner organisations that can provide advice on energy efficiency improvements and the available sources of funding where applicable. As a result, 94 properties have been improved in the town so far.
“This project runs in line with the council’s Climate Change Strategy by helping to reduce carbon emissions in the borough. Households where energy improvements are made should also see the immediate benefits that warmer and more efficient homes offer, this includes possible reductions in energy usage which is essential at a time when energy prices are continuing to rise.”