Award-winning social enterprise, Scarf, has launched an innovative new programme to help private landlords and homeowners prepare their properties for upcoming changes in legislation.
The Scottish Government-funded Energy Efficient Aberdeen and Ellon programmes aim to bridge the knowledge gap stopping landlords and property owners across Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire from making improvements to the efficiency of their property.
By offering a bespoke advice service and access to government loan funding and a trusted trader database, landlords can be supported to make changes recommended on an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) to bring their home in line with new rules coming into force next year which mean that to secure a new tenancy after April 2020 properties must have an EPC of at least band ‘E’, lowering to band ‘D’ by the end of March 2025.
Nicki Irvine, Senior Programme Officer at Scarf, said: “To date, most of the programmes around energy efficiency have been targeting the fuel poor and those seen as vulnerable or on low incomes, however in order to meet next year’s deadline we are working directly with landlords, advising them on the measures they need to take and also acting as a nominated third party if required to liaise directly with contractors.
“People who sign up to these programmes will benefit from free advice from industry experts, referrals into other programmes such as Home Energy Scotland, monitoring of the temperature in the property before and after measures(s) are installed and also a free EPC before and after the works have been carried out.”
Funding support has also been announced in the form of an interest-free loan of up to £10,000 with a 25% cashback offer through Home Energy Scotland, the Scottish Government’s flagship energy advice service, also delivered in the North-east by Scarf.
Kevin Stewart, Minister for Local Government, Housing and Planning, said: “Through our Energy Efficient Scotland Programme, we are committed to improving the energy efficiency of all Scotland’s buildings. Not only is it a significant economic opportunity, the removal of poor energy efficiency is crucial in delivering our wider aims to eradicate fuel poverty and our ambitions for emissions reductions.
“We are funding projects from local authorities, charities and third sector organisations to support development and delivery of a ‘hand-holding’ service for owner occupiers, private rent landlords, and small businesses.
“The work of Scarf in Aberdeenshire will enable us learn how successful different approaches are in stimulating and supporting energy efficiency investment across a variety of scenarios. This will be crucial in understanding motivations, incentives and barriers towards uptake, and how it can shape future policy and delivery.
“I look forward to following the progress of these projects and others, which will be instrumental in helping us achieve our ambitions to transform our homes and buildings to be warmer, greener and more energy efficient.”
In addition to home-owners and landlords, businesses can also benefit from the service through a referral to Resource Efficient Scotland, another service delivered locally by Scarf.
Scarf was established in Aberdeen in 1985 and has grown to deliver energy efficiency project on behalf of the Energy Saving Trust and local authorities as well as initiatives all aimed at alleviating fuel poverty from two sites in Aberdeen and Dundee. For more information on the work done by Scarf in the North East of Scotland please visit www.scarf.org.uk.
See also www.energyefficientaberdeen.co.uk and www.energyefficientellon.co.uk