04 Mar 2022

CIH calls for action on retrofitting homes in light of rising heating costs

CIH Northern Ireland has raised concerns about the rapidly rising gas and home heating oil prices and the impact on tenants and homeowners. Global factors and high inflation rates have impacted local prices considerably. Figures published by the Consumer Council show that 900litres of home heating oil cost consumers an average of £465.91 less than three months ago; today, the same volume of oil costs on average £758.11.

Our members have raised the rising cost of living as one of the most pressing issues for tenants and communities. Although the rise is linked to global issues, steps must be taken locally to help ensure tenants can live in warmer homes.

Heather Wilson  |  CIH Northern Ireland policy manager

Although cost increases are out of the control of local decision-makers, actions need to be taken to work towards retrofitting properties to ensure they are warmer and more energy efficient. In our manifesto ahead of the 2022 Assembly election, we have called for local political parties to create a new, specific fund for retrofitting social housing to help tackle fuel poverty. We have also been clear that similar to England and Wales, we need to establish a heat and buildings action plan to ensure we decarbonise our housing stock. How we build our homes also needs a step change. Commitment from all political parties is required to invest in Modern Methods of Construction to ensure the delivery of energy-saving homes at speed. It is extremely important that action is taken to ensure tenants can live comfortably.