Housing

Living in a cold home that is hard to heat should not be fact of life. You should feel safe at home. Homes that are in good repair, are safe, warm, comfortable and accessible will positively impact on your health and wellbeing. Bad housing conditions can affect your health and effect how much it costs for heating and hot water. Private and Social Landlords have responsibilities to make sure their tenants heating system is working, and it can keep the property warm throughout the winter. The Housing Health and Safety Rating system (HHSRS) . affects all home owners and landlords, including social landlords. The HHSRS is an assessment of hazards in your home that could affect your health. Support for West Sussex residents to keep safe and remain independent in their home is available, visit the Independence at home section at the bottom of this page.

Home owner

To find out what heating and insulation grants are available for homeowners, visit the West Sussex Grants and Scheme page. You may be eligible for a heating or insulation grant.

Housing repairs and maintenance

When carrying out maintenance and repairs to your property it is important to find suitably qualified trades people. Your boiler for example needs to be serviced/repaired/fitted by a qualified Gas Safe Engineer .

Some West Sussex Councils may be able to support you if you are a home owner, on a low income and are unable to afford the cost of specific home repairs. This depends on your Council area, financial situation and the repairs that are needed. You can check to see if your Council has a scheme by visiting Advice Near me and select your Council logo.

Support is also available to help keep you safe and independent at home. Visit the Independence at home section at the bottom of the page to see what support is available to you. 

Private tenant

By law there are responsibilities placed on Landlords on energy efficiency, heating and property maintenance. In the UK there are requirements for the Landlord to keep their rented property safe and free from health hazards. They should make sure all gas and certain electrical equipment is safely installed and maintained; and provide an Energy Performance Certificate for your property.* exemptions apply.

To find out what energy efficiency and heating grant support is available for Private rented tenants visit the West Sussex Grants and Scheme page.

Housing maintenance problems or concerns?

In the first instance you should contact your landlord or letting agent in writing to make them aware of any hazards or concerns you have. It is a good idea to keep a record of the dates you: noticed the problems, reported it, and the written correspondence. Your landlord should then let you know what they intend to do to address these.

If you feel your landlord or letting agent is failing to make these repairs, visit Citizens Advice for guidance on what your options are as a private rented tenant.

If you are still unsatisfied with your Landlords response you can contact your Council’s Environmental Health or Private Sector Housing department. You can find your local Council contact details on the Advice near me page.

Read more about what to do if your landlord tries to evict you after you have complained on the Citizens Advice website.

Social tenant

Social housing landlords must follow certain rules set down by the regulator of social housing. This includes meeting certain standards on repairs and maintenance.

For example, social housing landlords must have a repairs and maintenance service that responds to a tenant’s needs, offers choice, and aims to get the work done right first time. They must ensure that a tenant’s home meets the Decent Homes Standard.

In the first instance you should contact your Housing Association and inform them of your concerns. If you are not satisfied with their response you will then need to go through your Housing Association or Social landlord’s complaint procedure.

If you feel your landlord is failing to make these repairs you can visit Citizens Advice for guidance on making a complaint.

Landlord

An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is a legally required document giving a property an energy efficiency rating from A to G. In most cases a landlord needs to have one and you can check this on the Government website .  Please note there are some exemptions to this such as Houses of Multiple Occupancy.

You can find the most up to date information on landlord responsibilities and the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards on the Government website.

The Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) Legislation states since 1 April 2020, landlords can no longer let or continue to let properties covered by the MESS Regulations if they have an EPC rating below E, unless they have a valid exemption in place.  Landlords must register exemptions on the Government website .

Visit the West Sussex Grants and Scheme page where it lists energy efficiency grants and services eligible for tenants and landlords.

If your tenant is in need of some extra support to help keep them warm at home they can contact contact their local home energy advisor – help is available.

Some West Sussex Councils have a landlord accreditations scheme or further support available. See what is available on the Advice near me page.

 

Independence at home

If you find yourself struggling with daily tasks such as washing, cooking, or going up and down the stairs, you can get further support by contacting the West Sussex Adult Care Point .

Prevention Assessment Team:

You, or someone you know or care for, may be eligible for the Prevention Assessment Team support. They aim to help people living locally to stay healthy and remain independent. Further information can be found on the Sussex community NHS website . The West Sussex Prevention Assessment Teams (PAT) includes NHS Nurse Advisors, social care workers and support workers.

 

 

Age UK West Sussex Brighton and Hove

Information and Advice line for over 50’s

  • General Advice Line
  • Offers impartial local information and advice on a range of topics including money and housing advice, and referral into their winter home energy services .
  • For the over 50’s

Call: 0800 019 1310 Monday – Friday 10am – 2pm

Welcome to Age UK West Sussex, Brighton and Hove website .

 

Hand turning a thermostat knob

Contact a home energy advisor

If you are worried about your bills or keeping warm in the winter, please contact an advisor.

West Sussex grants & schemes

View which energy efficiency grants and services are available for tenants and landlords.

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