We’ve all been spending much more time at home recently. And if that means you’ve noticed draughty doors and windows or rooms that won’t stay warm, it may be time to make some energy efficiency upgrades.
The government’s Green Homes Grant scheme can provide financial support with making your home warmer and greener. If you’re just starting to think about home improvements, diving straight into the full details on gov.uk may be a lot to take in. So to help, we’ve put together this short guide to answer some of the important questions you might have.
How does the Green Homes Grant work?
The scheme is intended to provide financial support with energy efficiency works such as installing insulation or low carbon and renewable heating systems.
If you’re eligible for the scheme, you can apply for vouchers based on the financial support available and the cost of your chosen energy efficiency updates. You can redeem these vouchers after installation has been completed, with the funds going directly to the installer rather than you.
How much financial support could I get?
The Green Homes Grant provides up to £5,000 to cover two thirds of the cost of eligible improvements. You’ll need to pay for the remaining third yourself.
If you receive certain low-income support benefits, you can apply for up to £10,000 to cover the full cost of improvements.
What can I use the grant for?
Energy efficiency works that you can put the grant towards are split into two groups: Primary measures and Secondary measures.
Primary measures include: installing installation such as loft, solid wall, cavity wall, roof and underfloor; or installing a renewable heat system such as a heat pump, solar thermal or a biomass boiler.
Secondary measures include: draught proofing, installing double or triple glazing and energy efficient doors; and heating controls and insulation such as hot water tank insulation and smart thermostats.
You must be planning to install at least one Primary measure to be eligible for the grant.
Top tip: Heat pumps work best in well-insulated homes. If you don’t have proper insulation, this may be a good place to start with the grant. Read our guide to getting a heat pump for more information.
Can I apply for the grant if I live in private rented accommodation?
You can’t apply for the grant personally if you’re in private rented accommodation. But it is available to landlords.
If you’d like to approach your landlord about applying for the grant, the Gov.uk guide recommends checking your EPC rating and using the Simple Energy Advice website to put together an energy efficiency plan.
What steps do I need to take?
- Check you’re eligible for the grant.
- Decide what Primary and Secondary measures you would like to put it towards.
- Get quotes for the works from Green Homes Grant registered installers.
- Submit your application. If successful, you’ll receive a separate voucher for each measure that you’ve applied to install. These will be valid for 3 months.
- Complete the works and redeem your vouchers before they expire. Funds will go directly to the installer.
It’s important to do things in the right order. For example, you can’t start works until you’ve received a voucher, as any works started before your voucher issue date won’t be covered by the grant.
How can I make sure I’m using a Green Homes Grant registered installer?
To become a registered Green Homes Grant installer, companies must be certified by TrustMark. They will also be listed on the Simple Energy Advice website.
Installers of low carbon and renewable heating systems such as heat pumps must also be registered with the Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS).
When does the Green Homes Grant scheme end?
You currently have until 31 March 2022 to apply for the grant and redeem vouchers.