Report of the Director of Community and Children’s Services
The Committee considered a report of the Director of Community and Children’s Services which sought Members views and approval, if appropriate, to a suite of housing specific thermal winter measures to homes on its social housing estates, where residents will have at least one more winter with poorly performing single-glazed windows.
During the discussion and questions, the following points were noted:
a) Officers had taken advice since the agenda had been circulated and Members noted that it would be illegal to fund the rent credit via the HRA. It would also be illegal to offer HRA services to leaseholders.
b) There was adequate funding within the existing budget but, as the proposals represent a change of scope, they would need formal approval via the City Corporation’s Project Gateway Process.
c) The cost will be around £600 per property but not all homes would need them. The thermal curtains cost £90 per window.
d) Once the recommendations had been agreed, works would start immediately and October and November generally see milder temperatures.
e) Officers will work with colleagues in Chamberlains, to make the process as streamlined as possible, and present a timetable to the next Committee.
f) Officers work closely with the Climate Action Team and would give consideration to the use of Energy Doctors, which have been successful in the London Borough of Islington. Energy Doctors are also able to carry out ‘fall assessments’, which are a particular danger to older residents during cold spells.
g) Some residents are reluctant to let contractors into their properties as they have concerns about disruption and unfinished works. Members sought assurance of open and constructive communications and consultation.
h) The City Corporation offers services to leaseholders for electrical testing and gas servicing, and encourages them to join schemes, where they will benefit from economies of scale. Quick wins could be achieved in terms of jackets for water tanks, for example.
i) Temporary glazing is a cheaper option than secondary or double glazing and will be considered.
1. Having considered the suite of housing specific thermal winter measures proposed for homes on the City of London Corporation’s social housing estates, where residents will have at least one more winter with poorly performing single-glazed windows, officers be asked to consider Members’ views and suggestions, as set out above.
2. All of the housing specific thermal winter measures set out in the report be approved, together with Members’ further suggestions set out above.
3. All of the housing specific thermal winter measures be offered and rechargeable to leaseholders on the social housing estates in question.