How Can IoT Reduce The Risk of Fuel Poverty To Your Tenants?
It seems quite ironic that I’m sitting here in sweltering heat in the middle of July as I prepare this blog about fuel poverty and the challenges we face in the current climate and how winter will soon be here to test us even further. There’s no point in sugar-coating it; winter is known to bring with it a host of challenges, from increased fuel bills to impassable roads and icy, slippery surfaces. But not only does winter bring with it more challenges, but it also has the potential to ravage our social housing properties.
With the current fuel crisis causing huge concerns with household bills increasing by 54%, There’s no surprise that fuel poverty within social housing is one of the biggest challenges being faced this year.
Tenants who are living in a home that is cold, and damp could result in damaging effects on their health and wellbeing. Cold and damp weather is known to be directly linked to increased levels of respiratory diseases such as the common cold, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). It can also contribute to the onset of heart diseases and circulatory diseases.
Many studies have also shown that living in cold and damp conditions can lead to mental health issues such as depression and anxiety, with already vulnerable tenants being more likely to suffer. As a result, it’s clear that we not only need to look after tenants but the property that they live in too.
An estimated 3.16 million homes are at risk of fuel poverty.
To be classified as being in fuel poverty, the government guidelines state the following;
- They are living in a property with a fuel poverty energy efficiency rating of band D or below.
- When they spend the required amount on heating their home, they are left with a residual income below the poverty line
- With ever-increasing costs, many people who wouldn’t be classified in fuel poverty are now finding themselves in this very situation.
What is being done to combat fuel poverty?
With £3.8 billion allocated to the social housing decarbonisation fund to invest in upgrading properties covering external wall insulation, new heating systems, windows, energy-efficient doors, etc over a 10-year period. £800 million has been allocated for Wave 2, running up until June 2025 – Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund: Wave 2.1 – GOV.UK
Whilst this is a step in the right direction, a lot more needs to be done to support tenants across the UK.
Fortunately, the technology is available now! social housing organisations can harness IoT(Internet of Things) to proactively help tenants who are at a high risk of fuel poverty, identifying those who are not able to heat up their homes over periods of time. Which could potentially lead to a fatal consequence without intervention.
The data insights provided can support tenants who may be suffering in silence, unaware of the support they are eligible for. Support such as hardship grants, energy grants, or assistance with help around the home with aides.
Caption Data’s social housing monitoring solutions allow you to have real-time access to data resources remotely, supplying housing providers with far better data to make informed decisions based on evidence. By remotely leveraging a variety of data points, housing providers can more effectively allocate resources and help improve their tenant’s well-being.
Please contact Tom, IoT Solutions Specialist to register your interest in our remote monitoring solutions.