A heat meter measures the energy you use to heat your home and the hot water you use. It means we can charge you accurately for the energy you use, and it allows you to monitor how much energy you are using.
This will help with the cost of living as well as helping reduce carbon emissions which fits in with our plan to reach net zero carbon by 2030.
By law, all homes on a communal heating network are required to have a heat meter where possible.
This means we will need to check all council blocks that we manage to see whether it is cost effective to install heat meters for homes.
To comply with new regulations, we are scheduling installations to start in autumn 2022.
Your heat will still come from the communal heating system. The only thing that will change is how you are charged and how you pay.
Billing and payment
- Our contractors will install payment meters and you will get a statement every month from Switch 2.
- Currently you pay for your heating on a standard charge through your annual service charge, based on the usage and costs within your block.
- Once the payment meter is installed, you will receive monthly statements showing the amount of heat you are using, the cost and how that compares to previous months.
- When your heat meter is installed you will use Switch 2’s Pay As You Go service.
- Your payments to Switch 2 will be made up of charges for heat you have consumed and a daily standing charge. Your communal heating repairs and maintenance charges will still be included in your service charge (leaseholders) or rent (tenants).
Saving money and energy
The government estimates that once heat meters are installed, energy use per year will be approximately 20 per cent less in the first year. But this will depend on your household usage.
While these measures may reduce household usage of heat, the cost of gas changes a lot and heating costs are going up for most households.
We are keen to invest in our heating systems to make them more efficient for residents and will target our least efficient systems for replacement with fuel efficient alternatives.
For tips about how to keep your home warm and help with energy costs see our visit www.islington.gov.uk/winter.
You can also visit out cost of living support page on www.islington.gov.uk/CostOfLiving.
Contact and repairs
If you have any queries relating to your heat meter please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
To report a repair call 0800 694 3344 or 020 7527 5400 and press option 1.
Frequently asked questions
How long will the meter and billing equipment installation take?
We hope it will take less than a day for every home, but as every block and home is different, we will confirm timings when contractors start work on your block.
Who will install the meters?
Our contractors Switch 2, who provide a metering service on some other Islington estates, and GEM Environmental Building Services Ltd.
Will the heating service I receive change?
Fitting heat meters is a change for residents but the service you currently receive will not be changed for now. You will continue to have access to heating for the usual heating hours and during the cold season. We want to find out what you think about the communal heating service, including when you want to be able to access heating, whether you would want to turn the heating off sooner, and back on later to save fuel, as this will affect costs too. We will consult with residents so we understand your priorities.
Will all of Islington’s communal heating blocks be fitted with heat meters?
The Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS) have provided a tool which we have used to check whether the installation of heat meters is viable at your building. The tool uses historic consumption to calculate likely savings after heat meters have been installed. Viability is dependent on the anticipated savings being more than the costs associated with installing the heat meters, the results can vary even between identical or similar blocks if consumption differs. Current regulations require that the viability assessment must be carried out every four years using updated consumption and financial information.
Can I opt out of having the heat meter and billing equipment?
No, because the government has made it mandatory. You will need to provide access to your home for the equipment to be installed. Heat meters give you greater control over your heating costs and the council will continue to provide services at a fair cost to our residents.
Can I switch heating provider or install my own boiler?
No. Your home is part of a communal heating system that is managed by the council. The council buys gas in bulk from suppliers on your behalf, at the best available price, and this is the cost that we pass to you. The council will continue to be your heat network operator.
I think I already have a heat meter and payment equipment, what do I need to do?
A small number of estates already have communal heating payment systems, but if you get a letter about the change, it is unlikely that you already have this. All homes will be visited for a survey before the installation so you can discuss any concerns with the engineer.