LANDLORDS who rent out homes which break energy efficiency rules could face fines of up to £5,000 as regulations begin to be enforced.

Bury Council says it has identified an initial 326 private rented properties in the borough that are not compliant with the regulations, as they have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of F or G.

Such a rating could leave homes vulnerable to damp and fuel inefficiency with tenants facing higher fuel bills and risks to health.

The council’s cabinet have backed plans for more enforcement of the regulations including fines of up to £5,000 for the owner of each property which does not comply with the regulations.

A report to the cabinet, said: “In 2019/20 seven pilot studies across eight English local authorities were delivered which investigated enforcement of these regulations.

“Following this a draft toolkit was developed by Centre of Sustainable Energy.

“In 2020 Bury was one of 12 local authorities chosen and awarded £100,000 to test this draft toolkit.”

The cabinet has now introduced a policy so officers can impose fines where necessary to landlords and improve the energy efficiency standards of private rented properties.

From April last year landlords must not continue letting a domestic property which has an EPC rating of F or G.

The report, added: “We have identified an initial 326 private rented properties in the borough, that are potentially not compliant with the regulations.

“There have been no exemptions registered formally in Bury for domestic private sector homes.

“We have mapped this data to identify clusters of properties that are not compliant for proactive and focused targeted, ensuring limited staffing resources are utilised most effectively.

“Currently the maximum level of penalty imposed must be no more than £5,000, at an individual property.”

The council said that by approving the policy it would allow the enforcement of the regulations, improve the energy efficiency standards of private rented homes and improve health outcomes for tenants by ensuring they do not live in homes that are cold and damp.

They also said it would reduce fuel bills and alleviate fuel poverty for Bury residents.

The document went on to say they wished to see Bury become a flagship council for the enforcement of these regulations,