How can I get financial help?
There are a range of grants available to help cover the costs of home energy improvements, and new schemes are being launched all the time. But it can be a bit of a puzzle navigating the eligibility criteria, deadlines and application procedures.
Here’s details of the grants we know about. You can find out more by visiting the Home Energy Helpdesk, which offers free advice sessions at the monthly Repair Café.
This brand new scheme was launched in June 2022. Here’s the highlights:
- It is aimed at low income households (with an annual income below £30,000, or on certain benefits) and those that have high energy costs because they are off the gas grid.
- It is generous – and offers grants of up to £10,000 for low income households, and up to £25,000 for off grid houses.
- It is targeted at the least energy efficient homes with EPC ratings of E, F or G. (You can find out the latest EPC rating of your property here.)
- It broad ranging and covers all kinds of insulation, solar PV, air source heat pumps, heating controls and more.
- You get a detailed energy assessment of your home to see what measures are most appropriate.
- The work is carried out by pre-vetted installers, so you should be in safe hands.
- It’s backed by Horsham District Council, as part of a scheme involving over 20 local councils.
- It is only available for 9 months – ending in March 2023. So you need to get going soon to take advantage of it.
You can find out more and apply here.
Boiler Upgrade Scheme
This was launched in 2022 and is a UK Government initiative to encourage more people in England and Wales to install low carbon heating systems, such as heat pumps and biomass boilers.
The scheme covers three low carbon heating systems:
- Air sourced heat pumps (£5000 grant)
- Biomass boilers (£5000 grant)
- Ground sourced heat pumps (£6000 grant)
Other key aspects:
- It runs until 2025.
- Your property needs to be well insulated first.
- Your installer will apply for the grant on your behalf – so they deal with the paperwork.
- So you need to choose an installer first.
es heating systems and controls can be provided or upgraded under this scheme. This can be a good route for someone who needs disabled adaptations that have been specified by a council approved Occupational Therapist.
Find out more about it from the West Sussex County Council website.
ECO4 Grants – Energy Company Obligation
ECO4 is the latest version of the Government’s Energy Company Obligation Grant Scheme. It is designed to improve the least energy efficient housing stock occupied by low income and vulnerable households. It is overseen by OFGEM and runs until March 2026. Here’s a helpful blog explaining how it works, and here’s an article from Money Saving Expert website.
You might be eligible for help if you live in private housing and get one of the following benefits:
- Child Tax Credit
- Working Tax Credit
- Universal Credit
- Pension Guarantee Credit
- Pension Savings Credit
- Income Support
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
- Child Benefit
- Housing Benefit
Here’s a simple online tool to check if you’re eligible.
If you own your house, it must have an EPC energy efficiency rating of D, E, F or G to be eligible.
If you rent from a private landlord, the house must have an EPC energy efficiency rating of E, F or G to be eligible. And you must have the owner’s permission to do the work.
It covers a wide range of improvements including boiler upgrades, insulation, biomasss boilers and PV panels.
You apply for the scheme via your existing energy supplier, provided they are registered with the scheme. All the big players are, including: British Gas, Bulb, EDF, Eon, Ecotricity, Ovo, and Scottish Power. You can find a full list and contact details of where to apply here.
How it works: The energy company will get in touch with you. You’ll then be taken through a telephone assessment, which will include answering questions about various things, including your income, whether you receive certain benefits, and your property’s energy efficiency rating. One of their appointed installers will then arrange a date to visit your home and confirm whether it’s suitable for the grant. The grant is paid direct to the installer so you don’t have to pay a thing.
Other useful links
West Sussex Affordable Energy page on heating and insulation grants
Horsham District Council’s advice page on saving money on energy bills