The government’s Green Homes Grant has opened for applications, offering property owners the chance to claim a voucher worth up to £5,000 for energy efficiency improvements.
Low-income households can claim a higher grant of up to £10,000 for works such as installing insulation and low-carbon heating.
Under the scheme, the government will pay two-thirds of the cost of qualifying energy efficiency improvements, with the property owner covering the remaining third.
However, home-owners must carry out one of a number of primary measures before they can get funding towards any of the secondary upgrades.
The government’s contribution towards any secondary measures will be limited to the value it has paid out for the primary measures installed by the home-owner.
The following types of insulation are counted as primary measures:
- Solid wall
- Under floor
- Cavity wall
- Flat or pitched roof
- Room in roof
- Insulating a park home
The following low-carbon heat source installations are also on the list of primary measures
- Air source, ground source or hybrid heat pump
- Solar thermal
- Biomass boilers
The following secondary measures can be installed after home owners have carried out one of the primary upgrades:
- Draught proofing
Double/triple glazing (where replacing single glazed windows)
- Secondary glazing (in addition to single glazing)
- External energy efficient doors (replacing single glazed or solid doors installed before 2002)
- Heating controls, hot water tank thermostats and insulation
All work must be carried out by TrustMark or Micro Generation Certification Scheme registered tradespeople by the end of March 2021.
The government has set up an information website, which has information about how to apply for the vouchers.
Hargreaves Lansdown personal finance analyst Sarah Coles says: “The Green Homes Grant should be a great opportunity to line your home with insulation for a bargain price, but risks becoming a way for scammers to line their pockets instead.
“The scheme itself has built-in protections, to ensure that work can only be done by approved tradespeople who have registered with TrustMark.
“The problem is that when the government launches high profile schemes like this, cowboys and scammers will try to cash in.
“Back in 2014 when the government was running its Green Deal to cover insulation work, scammers came up with a whole host of horrible ways to con people out of their cash – from charging for bogus assessments to using it as an excuse to get people to part with their bank details.
“Cifas has already warned that scammers are cashing in this time too, by sending emails claiming to be about the scheme, and using a bogus weblink to steal personal data. Homeowners have also reported being cold-called and sent texts from people claiming to be offering insulation as part of the scheme.”