Insulation, F**&**G Energy Performance Ratings & Fire Safety

If you manage flats, you will have thought about insulation. If not before, then the tragic recent events at Grenfell Tower will have surely grabbed your attention.

We hope that those terrible scenes have not put you off doing the basics for the properties you manage e.g. loft insulation. Often what we do significantly improves fire safety.

How many of your residents have fitted ceiling level downlighters under existing loft insulation without properly covering the downlighters? A clear fire risk that we come across time and time again. 30 uncovered downlighters in a flat is our worst case to date. When we top-up loft insulation we sort that sort of thing out as part of the job - normally free of charge.

We’ve worked with roughly 100 block management companies over the last 5 years. Our work on around 1,500 flats will save around 100,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions.

This is some of what we’ve seen from Managing Agents:

  • Many really want to make a difference to the people living in the flats they manage. Maybe they will get new business via recommendations!
  • Often a Managing Agent knows there is work needing doing e.g flat roof renewal and we can help with a grant. Typically, a flat roof grant can contribute around the £5,000-£10,000 mark but our highest flat roof grant this year is £42,500. What we do fits perfectly alongside the s20 process that you will need to run for this sort of work.
  • Some think that if it is not in a communal area then it is nothing to do with them.
  • A few make a percentage-based charge even if work is done for free using grant funding.

Most Managing Agents are aware of new legislation coming into force in April 2018 and meaning that a property with a F or G energy performance certificate (“EPC”) rating cannot be let out to a new tenant.

  • Some think they should do something about this as they will get blamed for the consequences even if it is not their responsibility.
  • Some realise that to solve EPC rating problems the best way can be to do work on a block-wide basis - flat roof renewal is the best example of this.
  • Some are doing nothing.
  • Some are organising reports (and charging a fee) for the properties that have these poor EPC ratings. We are can help here.

There are almost 200,000 flats with F or G EPC ratings in England and Wales!

If letting agents or freeholders see you taking a calm and professional approach to these flats in your portfolio, will they be more inclined to recommend you?

Would you rather plan things now rather than face a series of mini-crises from April 2018 onwards?

How many of these flats do you manage? Where are they? Chances are we already know where most of them are.

How?

We have a database of around 210,000 resident management companies complete with their Directors’ details and cross-referenced against EPC information.

Take a fictitious residents’ association: St Paul's Court Residents Association Limited - our software finds the actual postcode for St Paul’s Court and matches it to the EPCs for that block of flats. We also have the Directors’ details from Companies House.

We will quickly tell you:

  • which properties within St Paul’s Court have F or G rated EPCs
  • where we can do work for free or contribute to work that you had planned anyway.

Can we use this database to help you target new residents’ associations to help you to grow your business? In short, yes!

Would it make you look good to write to the Directors of a residents’ association not yet managed by you and tell them:

  • how many flats are F or G rated within their block
  • how many flats are eligible for free insulation measures
  • what the total value of energy efficiency grant funding for that block is? (a recent value was £27,500 for example).

Eco Matters would love to talk to you about how we can help you to do all of this! 

Who are ECO Matters? What works can we organise?

Set up five years ago, Eco Matters is a Sussex based company that provides insulation to residential blocks of flats. In company’s founder Peter Dunsby’s own words, ‘I wanted to make a difference and do whatever I could to combat climate change. We fell into working on flats by accident, now it’s what we do day in day out… if we can save people living in flats money on their heating bills then we think that’s great!’

In these five years, we have organised insulation for from Glasgow to Plymouth and Eastbourne and nearly everywhere in between. We look at a block of flats, we work out the best options to improve the insulation or to make the heating system better, and then we work out what grants there are to help meet the cost. Sometimes we can do work for free, sometimes we get a grant for work that has to happen anyway, like renewing a flat roof to save energy and reduce condensation in apartments.

Eco Matters can either fit or can organise cavity wall insulation, flat roof insulation, loft insulation, external or internal wall insulation and underfloor insulation (for example for garages below flats or undercrofts) for blocks of residential flats. We can also assist with communal heating system upgrades and switches from electric heating to a renewable based heating system.

Contact: 0800 001 4943

Email: info@ecomatters.org.uk

Website:  www.ecomatters.org.uk

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