If you are a building owner or landlord of a commercial or residential multi let building you may be affected by the Heat Network (Metering and Billing) Regulations 2014.
The Regulations apply to a “heat supplier”; in most cases this is someone who supplies and charges for the supply of heating, cooling or hot water through a communal network in one building to more than one tenant. The Regulations are complex, but if you have a multi let building with communal heating or cooling systems you could fall within this definition.
What does it mean to you?
Notification: You need to provide specific information to the National Measurement & Regulation Office about your communal systems. The deadline for submission for existing systems expires at the end of December 2015.
Installation: From 31 December 2016, heat suppliers are obliged to install meters which can measure the supply of heating, cooling and hot water to each individual occupier “where cost effective and technically feasible”. If individual meters are not an option, heat cost allocators and thermostats on radiators may have to be installed. The aim is for the end users to be able to control and monitor their energy consumption. If no equipment is installed another assessment will be required within 4 years.
Billing: Where meters or heat allocators have been installed the heat supplier is already obliged to provide at least one bill a year based on actual consumption provided the cost of meeting this requirement does not exceed £70 a year per tenant. This could be problematic for landlords where existing leases provide for charging based on floor area or where rents are all inclusive, and we anticipate that disputes will arise.