Boiler consultation needs a more conciliatory tone - David Alexander

7th Dec 2023
Boiler consultation needs a more conciliatory tone - David Alexander - D. J. Alexander

Extending the deadline to introduce greener heating systems in Scotland’s residential and private rented sector was a welcome statement announced in Patrick Harvie’s consultation paper the Heating in Buildings Bill.

For landlords the deadline is now 2028, and for homeowners it is 2033, which at least allows some more time to assess the viability and affordability of this scheme.

But within this consultation there remains the constant refrain of threat and coercion rather than conciliation and encouragement. For example, we are told that: “Private landlords would be subject to civil penalties if they don’t meet the minimum energy efficiency standard after 2028.” Not enough encouragement for the private rented sector (PRS) or concern over the affordability or timescale but simply an edict that this must be done by this date or else.

Homeowners are told that: “if it becomes evident that not enough properties are complying with the Standard, we may think about other tools to help us achieve this, including wider civil penalties.” Some of there may include higher council taxes or changes to the land and building transaction tax (LBTT) but this remains under review.