What is the Green Homes Grant and how does it work?
The Green Homes Grant is an incentive-based scheme in which the government will pay up to two-thirds of energy saving home improvements up to £5,000 – with low-income homeowners being able to claim 100%. The vouchers will be issued to homeowners and landlords and will run until March 2021.
The home improvement measures available under the scheme are split into ‘primary’ and ‘secondary’ measures. The voucher must be used to install at least one primary measure before the voucher can be used to help cover the cost of a secondary measure. To obtain a voucher, homeowners and landlords in England will be able to seek advice from the Simple Energy Advice
(SEA) service website.
Energy saving home improvements covered by the scheme include heat pumps, biomass and solar thermal heating solutions, insulation, underfloor heating, radiators and double glazing, but gas boilers are not included – instead, people are being urged to go for low-carbon heating alternatives.
Under the scheme, the Treasury claims that utilising these vouchers could help families make an average annual saving of £200 on their energy bills. But it’s not only homeowners and landlords who will benefit, business secretary Alok Sharma says
: “[The scheme] will create new work for many thousands of talented builders, plumbers, and other tradespeople right across the UK.”
Currently only homes in England are eligible for the scheme, but new-build and non-domestic properties are exempt.
What are the primary saving measures?
In order to qualify for any funding, homeowners and landlords must install at least one of the following measures in the primary category:
Low carbon heating – such as ground source heat pumps, biomass or solar thermal, underfloor heating and radiators
Insulation – such as loft, cavity wall, or under-floor insulation
It’s worth noting that replacements of existing insulation or low carbon heating will not qualify for a grant. However additional works to ‘top-up’ existing measures are eligible. In order for the installation of low carbon heating to qualify, the house will also need to have adequate insulation before it is eligible for a grant.