Green Homes Scheme Launches

Homeowners in England can now apply for vouchers worth up to £10,000 to make their homes more energy efficient through the government’s Green Homes Grant scheme, which opens this week.

The Government has announced a £2 billion Green Homes Grant which will fund up to two-thirds of the cost of home improvements of over 600,000 homes. Homeowners and landlords can apply for a voucher up to a maximum of £5,000 (or £10,000 for low income households).

With continued pressure on ‘energy efficiency’ of let residential properties, this grant could provide a significant opportunity for landlords to invest in residential dwellings.

Eligibility

You will be eligible to apply for the grant if you own a property in England. The scheme does not apply to Wales.

What ‘home improvements’ are funded?

Vouchers can be used to install at least one primary measure before being eligible to cover the cost of a secondary measure.

Primary measures include:

Solid wall, cavity wall, underfloor, loft, flat roof, room-in-roof and park home insulation. Also, air source and ground source heat pumps, solar thermal and biomass pellet boilers and low carbon heating where the home is suitably insulated are covered.

Secondary measures include:

Draught proofing, double/ triple glazing, secondary glazing, energy efficient doors, hot water tank thermostats and insulation and heating controls.

Who can provide ‘home improvements’?

Tradespeople carrying out the home improvements must be registered for TrustMark or Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) accreditation to take part in the scheme. This is to give confidence that improvements will be of the highest quality. The work must be completed by 31 March 2021.

How can you apply?

Homeowners will be able to access advice and support from the Simple Energy Advice (SEA) service. SEA will suggest appropriate home improvements that homeowners may be able to apply for support in funding. You need to visit: simpleenergyadvice.org.uk/pages/green-homes-grant/questionnaire and complete the online tool.

Households will be offered a list of approved TrustMark and MCS registered tradespeople in their local area who can carry out the work. Once the works are agreed, vouchers will be issued from the end of September so that work can commence. For years, the Government has been putting increased pressure on residential landlords to improve the ‘energy efficiency’ of their properties without any support or funding therefore the introduction of the Green Homes Grant scheme is welcomed. The key to its success will be in sufficient tradespeople signing up and ensuring access to funding is straightforward.

Frank Smith & Co Solicitors 01242 801748 www.franksmithandco.com

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