Realising reduced carbon emissions through energy efficiency
The Government’s Clean Growth Strategy sets a target for social housing providers to achieve at least EPC Band C for rented properties by 2035 and the longer-term target of all homes being carbon-zero by 2050 in the UK.
Although launched in 2017, many Housing Associations are still struggling to get to grips with the impact this will have on their housing stock.
Intended to give Housing Providers a boost to meet the Energy Efficiency targets, the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund was set up to help fund retrofit and decarbonisation projects, with the second phase of funding ending in 2022 and successful applicants scheduled to receive their monies from Spring 2023.
If you were one of the Housing Associations successful in your bid, you should have received notification in February or March 2023.
It is essential to start planning the spend as soon as possible, to meet targets and to avoid a situation where unspent monies could be recovered, the grant terminated, or where the grant for the subsequent year is reduced at the annual review.
Having a robust Remedial Action Plan at each annual review is a must for best chance of acceptance of the Funded Activities and Grant Funding Agreement to continue at each review until 2025.
Carefully prepared annual accounts must also be provided which show how the Grant has been applied to deliver the Funded Activities.
A robust Remedial Action Plan
Demonstrating that plans for housing maintenance and repair are in place, that housing quality is being improved, and that steps are being taken to ensure that minimum EPC levels will be met, is essential.
An asset management system such as Integrator Housing Systems’ cloud-based ‘Integrator Plus’ can really help you get there!
And the Energy Toolkit from Integrator Housing Solutions can show what improvement measures are necessary to achieve specific SAP targets across your stock and at what cost, as well as allow you to evaluate your own measures for specific improvement scenarios – applying roof insulation for instance. You can also view the before and after results.
Capturing plans, data and cost projections
We are lucky enough to have one of the most highly qualified and experienced Energy Assessors in England within our management team, our Director of Energy, Paul Harrison.
Paul says, “I would always advocate that Housing Providers start with a ‘Fabric First’ approach. There are a myriad of measures which can help improve the energy efficiency, warmth and improve the environment for tenants which fall within ‘Fabric First’. These include wall insulation, loft insulation, replacement windows and doors, more modern heating systems, and hot water systems.”
However, for Housing Associations with hundreds or thousands of properties making these changes and upgrades involves a huge amount of work and expense.
Paul adds, “The Housing Associations we work with want to achieve compliance with government standards, naturally. And, of course, there are consequences from the Regulator of Social Housing and the new Social Housing Bill which looks likely to levy unlimited fines on Housing Associations that fail to meet standards for tenants.”
As part of their Housing Asset Management Strategy, to meet Energy Efficiency standards and in the move to reduced carbon emissions, Housing Associations can use a tool such as Integrator Housing Solutions’ Energy Toolkit to track investments in maintaining, improving and upgrading properties.
Use the Energy Toolkit to:
- Capture energy-specific data on your stock
- Find gaps in data and pinpoint problem assets
- Cost out energy-specific improvements
- Show how improvements can hit specific RdSAP EPC targets
- Evaluate your own proposed package of improvement measures
- See the impact of improvement measures on your ratings and costs without affecting your live data
- Add on to Integrator Plus or use as a standalone product
Use Integrator Plus as your cloud-based asset management solution to:
- Monitor ongoing spend
- Search and access your register of assets or stock condition components
- Includes customisable asset details
- Search across your whole asset register using multiple criteria
- Save asset filters based on specific assets or configurable sets of conditions
- Check you’re complying with current government standards
Discover our cloud-based integrated energy efficiency solution, the Energy Toolkit.
Find out more about our software, request a no obligation quote and request a demo or trial.