The government and local authorities fund schemes to encourage homeowners and tenants renting from private landlords to make energy-saving improvements to their houses and flats.
What sort of work is covered by the scheme?
Depending on your circumstances, there are grants to help with loft and cavity insulation, installation of reflective radiator panels and thermostatic valves, draught proofing, jackets for hot water cylinders and compact fluorescent light bulbs. You may even be eligible for a complete new central heating system or repairs to the existing system. Financial assistance is also provided to install a condensing boiler when you’re old boiler breaks down.
Who is eligible?
Most current schemes are available only to those who are receiving benefits, or people over a certain age may be entitled to free home improvements. The exact criteria are subject to change from time to time-so you think you may be eligible, contact your local authority for advice.
The work usually has to be carried out by approved contractors, and you’ll need to obtain an estimate from one of these contractors before funds can be made available. At the moment there are no grants available for DIY improvements.
Who is providing the funds?
Government funding provides up to a maximum of £2700 to improve heating and energy efficiency. In most cases, you will only be eligible for a proportion of the estimated cost of these improvements. In England, the scheme is known as Warm Front. Similar schemes and funding are available in other parts of the UK: Warmer homes in Northern Ireland, Warm Deal and The Central Heating Program in Scotland, and The Home Energy Efficiency Scheme in Wales.
Local authorities operate schemes under various names. Information can be obtained from your local council, who will usually provide application forms and leaflets that describe their particular schemes in detail.
Energy supply companies are obliged by law to achieve certain targets for saving energy in the domestic market. As a result, suppliers provide a range of authors aimed at reducing energy consumption. It will either send a representative to your home to access what improvements you can make, or lash you to provide information about your property that will allow them to suggest which measures will be benefit and what grants are available to carry out the work. You can pick up orders from any supply company, regardless of who actually supplies you with gas or electricity.
The Internet is a useful source of information on obtaining funds towards energy-saving measures. Local authorities have their own website that offer help to residents in the areas. The following websites may prove helpful for guidance on how to obtain the grants outlined above –